Great Start to 2021 with Offshore Pelagic Sightings!

We are excited to share these recent offshore sightings from local pelagic experts, Dave Povey and Matt Sadowski, who were out to cover the offshore areas on 2 Jan 2021.

Searcher Natural History Tours has scheduled our NEW 3-day pelagic birding tour over Memorial Day weekend!   We plan to spend time covering the distant waters needed to access these birds while we search, observe, and photograph birds and other marine life including whales and dolphins. Leaders will include Dave Povey and Dave Pereksta.

The following is a partial list and numbers from the trip on 2 Jan 2021. Dave reports:

“Most birds were beyond 5 nautical miles, and many more at 10 nautical miles plus. We covered a wide area from below Point Loma including the Nine Mile Bank, and covered south to north and all the way into La Jolla Canyon.”

    • Northern Fulmar (1)
    • Pink-footed Shearwater (1)
    • dark shearwater sp. (1)
    • Black-vented Shearwater (4000+)
    • Brown Booby (1)
    • Red Phalarope (4)
    • Parasitic Jaeger (1)
    • Pomarine Jaeger (3-5)
    • jaeger sp. (2)
    • Scripps’s Murrelet (2)
    • Cassin’s Auklet (1)
    • Rhinoceros Auklet (2-3)
    • Bonaparte’s Gull (1000+)
    • California Gull (700)
    • Royal Tern (5-6)
2021-01-04T12:08:07-08:00January 4th, 2021|News, Trip Reports|

NEW 3-day Pelagic Birding Tour 2021

Photo by Alisa Schulman-Janiger⁠

Photo by Alisa Schulman-Janiger⁠

It’s a great time to get offshore to deep-water pelagic zones to search out exciting seabirds such as Cook’s Petrels, Scripps’ Murrelets, Black-footed and Laysan Albatross; Black, Leach’s and Ashy Storm-petrels; Brown and other Boobies; South Polar Skua; Pomarine, Parasitic, and Long-tailed Jaegers; and Arctic Terns. Plus we’ll have a long list of usual species found in our waters, often gathering around underwater banks, mounts, and canyons. This trip is limited to ABA-waters, including coverage of the southern-most areas of it.

2020-12-11T14:30:48-08:00December 11th, 2020|News|

Giving Tuesday!

This is an incredible photo of a gray whale. Happy #GivingTuesday. In case you don’t know or are unaware of Giving Tuesday, often stylized as #GivingTuesday for the purposes of activism, refers to the Tuesday after U.S. Thanksgiving in the United States. It is a movement to create an international day of charitable giving at the beginning of the Christmas and holiday season.⁠

On this #GivingTuesday we are giving back to a few of our favorite foundations and reacher groups. Every little bit can go a long way. If you want to donate here are some we chose to donate to this #GivingTuesday.⁠

Foundations and non-profits:⁠
For Whale Sharks

For Vaquita

For Gray Whales

2020-11-30T14:33:33-08:00December 1st, 2020|News|

Pelagic Birding Trip

Searcher Natural History Tours’ annual 5-day Labor Day pelagic birding trip sailed Sept 7-11, 2020. Passengers and leaders surveyed deep-water areas from the southwestern limits of the ABA, north to the Channel Islands, and west to the Rodriguez Dome and San Juan Seamount, offshore up to 200 miles.

Highlight sightings included Laysan albatross;  Guadalupe, Scripps, and Craveri’s murrelets (in the same day!); Sabine’s gull; Nazca and Blue-footed boobies; South Polar skua; Cook’s petrel; and a flock of Buller’s shearwaters. Over 100 species were observed and photographed.
Join us in 2021! There’s a few spots still open so you can reserve your spot at the rail. Meanwhile, enjoy our highlights video!
link to 2021 trip: 2021 Pelagic Birding Tour
2020-10-30T10:04:30-07:00October 30th, 2020|Trip Reports|

2020 Pelagic Birding Tour Sep 7-11

Hello all,

It’s been excellent day with plenty of things to look at including storm petrels, shearwaters, and albatrosses including at least 20 black-footed and the highlight of the day: a laysan albatross! Lots of people added this bird to their life list.

We spent quite a bit of time on the Cortez Bank with albatrossess next to the boat. And then had a surprise visit from an immature Nazca booby too. Great weather again with a little breeze this afternoon. Headed home tonight after a very successful trip!

Captain Art and Team Searcher

2020-09-11T14:27:18-07:00September 11th, 2020|Trip Reports|

2020 Pelagic Birding Tour Sep 7-11

Hello all,

We had a great day today and several people added to their life list! Passenger Ben had a birthday today and added four birds to his life list.

We saw all three possible murrelets today: Craveri’s, Scripps’s and Guadalupe. That was a first for us on this annual trip!
The weather was calm, and we had good looks at blue whales and a distant look at fin whales. Common dolphin showed up as well.

Captain Art and Team Searcher

2020-09-10T11:01:58-07:00September 10th, 2020|Trip Reports|

2020 Pelagic Birding Tour Sep 7-11

Hello all,

We started our day at Santa Barbara Island where a brown booby colony has established. Recently a blue footed booby has joined the colony, so this is the first time that we have seen a blue-footed booby on our Southern California pelagic tours, which is significant. There is speculation that there might be breeding between the brown and blue-footed boobies.

After spending time viewing the boobies, we headed west towards a temperature change with hopes of some bird life there. There were shearwaters, storm petrels, jaegers ,terns and an occasional murrelet. We also found common dolphins, a few bottlenose dolphins, and a single humpback whale.
We are headed to San Miguel Island to spend the night and then head out into deep water tomorrow.

Captain Art and Team Searcher

Booby colony on a rock at Santa Barbara Island.

2020-09-09T07:40:34-07:00September 9th, 2020|Trip Reports|

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