Sunday, May 3, 2009

Your Perseverance May Outlast My Ambition



Do you know what sucks? The tropicbird chick and the petrel chick that are pictured in my last couple blogs are already dead. Talk about a bummer. The cause of mortality for both is probably Laysan Albatross. Its not that they eat bird chicks, they just don't give a fuck. They like playing with stuff. Theyre like cats.....bird cats. Not catbirds though....that would be confusing. Yeah. Anyways. Someone mentioned yesterday that they saw an albatross walk up to a White Tern chick, grab it, break its neck, toss it aside and walk away. Bizarre. Well at least it is the albatross doing this, who have probably been doing this for many thousands of years.....it would be much worse if rats were the culprit. The government spent millions of dollars on eradicating rats from the atoll, and the huge jump in seabird numbers since then has shown that it was well worth it. I don't even want to think of what will happen if they somehow get introduced out here again....it would be an ugly scene.

Next week is Gary's last full week here. He got here the same time I did (he is the other volunteer here), but is leaving several weeks earlier. I'm not sure whats going to happen when I am the only volunteer here........I might institute some "migrant surveys" (aka go birding) or something if left unsupervised. I'll probably be too busy though.



This turtle was left stranded on the reef by a low tide.

I watched Sideways today. Great movie. I recognized a lot of where that movie was shot. Amusing that they had a scene in it from Oxnard. But I think the Oxnardness inhanced the scene. And why, why, is it called Oxnard? Its a terrible name for a horrible city. You know, if they named it "Tealtown" or "Dendroica" or even "Bushtit", there would probably be no homicides or gang warfare at all. What does Oxnard mean anyway? All the cities around there have very obvious Spanish-sounding names (Port Hueneme, San Buenaventura, Santa Paula, Camarillo).....Oxnard does not fir the motif. Oh well, at least it gave birth to "Nardcore" and the 2006 Man Of The Year, Carlos.

Too much wind this weekend. No bueno. It makes me restless and think about migration. Whats the point of talking about the woes of Oxnard anyway? Sheesh.



One of my few Bonin Petrel flight shots. It's a hard picture to get, since they are usually only around after dark.

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