Wednesday, April 08, 2009

I am reluctant to confess how much time we spend watching birds, imagining that people will think we have nothing better to do. But it's a great variety show, with pelicans swooping and diving into the water, osprey chittering back and forth at each other, and at us, while the frigate birds glide silently overhead. Sometimes there is even a close encounter...

We are now moving back south down the sea of Cortez, and are currently anchored off the small volcanic island called Isla Coronados. Last evening we went ashore for a stroll along the beach on a isolated spit of land. But the minute we stepped ashore, the gulls began a mad squawking, and they were slow to yield space. Ignoring them, we began exploring the beach and dunes. The gulls increased their racket, and began to fly at our heads. Just then, the Captain discovered one perfect gull egg in a nest. I kept my hat on while I took a quick photo, then we escaped.

The other bird news is that there are hundreds of Eared Grebes around here, and they are currently hanging out in very tightly packed rafts, like a solid brown patch on the water. Both males and females are getting their breeding plumage, which includes a bright tuft of yellow and red feathers on each side of their heads. We wonder if they are getting ready to fly north. I wish a proper bird expert would read this and tell us, but then a proper bird expert would probably have something better to do!

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