Green Cape Seawatch

Subject: Green Cape Seawatch
From: (Dr. Peter Milburn)
Date: Tue, 3 Sep 1996 22:34:47 +1000 (EST)
Andy Burton wrote of weather most foul which I read just before heading off
to Green Cape NSW having checked the weather reports.  Unfortunately I
couldn't muster any partners in insanity, mostly because they would have
been very useful in clearing a tree off the Green Cape Road at 04:00 in
torretial rain and a half gale.  I finally made the tip at first light.

The wind was still blowing at about 40 to 50 knots out of the South East. 
Visibility was dire due to a mixture of fog and driving rain.  The sea was
running at about 4 metres on top of about a 6 metre swell........  Perfect
seawatching weather!!!!

Some 50 Australian Fur Seal were  actively catching fish which had
concentrated several balls of krill.  This inturn attracted many birds to
forage in the area immediately off the end of the rocks!!

As expected on the 2nd day of a heavy southerly blow there was a constant
southerly movement of Procellariiformes.  Birds were recorded between 06:30
and 14:30, when the torrential rain resumed reducing visibility to virtuall
nil,  with totals as follows:

Black-browed Albatross  21 adults, 28 imm.
Yellow-nosed Albatross (ssp. bassi) 14 adults, 12 imm.
Shy Albatross (ssp. cauta/steadi) approx. 2250 (15% 1st year)
Salvin's Albatross 1 adult
Bullers Albatross 1 adult, 2 1st year
Northern Giant Petrel 2 1st year
Southern Giant Petrel 10 (1 pure white bird)
Macronectes sp. 11
Fairy Prion aprrox. 500
Antarctic/Salvin's Prion 1
Pachyptila sp. approx .1500
Great-winged Petrel (ssp. macroptera) 461
Great-winged Petrel (ssp. gouldi) 2
Kerguelen Petrel 2
White-headed Petrel 20
White-chinned Petrel (ssp. aequinoctialis) 1
Little Shearwater 1
Australasian Gannet approx. 900
Great Cormorant 1
Crested Tern 34
White -fronted Tern 5

Pergrine Falcon 1 male which helped itself to several prions during the day!

I saw no 'fragile' species e.g. gulls at all at sea.  Eden Harbour held the
usual gang of 1st/2nd year Pacific Gulls (28).  

Dr.Peter Milburn
Biomolecular Resource Facility
The Australian Nation University
GPO Box 334 Canberra ACT 2601   AUSTRALIA
Phone No.  <61> <6> 2494326
Fax No.    <61> <6> 2494326
E-mail Address  

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