On Saturday I joined fifty fellow birders on a pelagic trip out to the continental shelf edge and canyons, far south of Nantucket, MA. This trip was run by the Brookline Bird Club (BBC), which operates a slew of great trips out of Hyannis annually. Having not been pelagic birding this year, I was looking forward to getting back out on the water.
Hopes were high for a rarity following sightings of Black-capped Petrel and Bridled Tern in the warm water area that we’d be visiting. Unfortunately, we never did luck into any unexpected species, although we ran up a respectable total of both seabirds and cetaceans. Personal highlights included: five species of shearwater (Cory’s, Great, Sooty, Manx, and Audubon’s), three species of storm-petrel (Wilson’s, Leach’s, and my life Band-rumped), Red-necked Phalarope, and Pomarine Jaeger.
On the marine mammal front, we picked up such species as Short-beaked Common, Bottlenose, and Risso’s Dolphins, and Fin Whale. Other wildlife highlights included Basking Shark, Ocean Sunfish (Mola mola), Portuguese Man ‘o War, and a number of flyingfish.