While yesterday’s whale encounters were awesome, there’s so much more to the story right now as species are gorging on the abundant food in Monterey Bay National Marine Sancturay. The young Common Murre chick survived the great plunge perhaps from the cliffs of Devil’s Slide towering 1000 feet over the Pacific. As it glided down and “hit” the water, the father Murre waited patiently for the chick’s first encounter with a salty world. For the next several months, “Dad” and off spring will be an insperable pair as the young chick learns how to dive, forage and avoid predators. Diving over 100 meters in depth using its wings to ‘fly” underwater, they search for prey items such as krill, squid and fish. 10,000 or more Common Murres drowned in gill nets during the 1970’s-1980’s. Thousands more were loss in Northern California during a tragic oil spill event in 1986. Successful Adaptaions include a uniquely shaped pointy egg which helps prevent it from rolling off the bear cliffs where these fascinating birds nest. (photos were taken using a telephoto sony lens then cropped with http://www.bluewaterventures.org).
Archive for August, 2014
Bioluminescence Night Kayaking
Last night we had an amazing light show during our first of several bioluminescence night paddles in Elkhorn Slough. Before the water began to sparkle with light producing dinoflagellates, sea otters and harbor seals popped up near by. Marine mammal interactions are quite different at night. Many species produced a “cold light”, a chemical reaction that emits sparks of light. Bioluminescence may serve as a warning, a lure, communication or mate selection. As our paddles glided through the water, light exploded below us, light dripping from the paddles.
We’ve added 2 more Bioluminescence night paddles, Sept 12th and 13th. We hope teachers will bring their students as well booking a school field trip during September and early October. Details at:www.bluewaterventures.org. Photos from internet, my water camera is in repair!