Eaglehawk Neck (Tasmania) Pelagic - 23 February 2003

Subject: Eaglehawk Neck (Tasmania) Pelagic - 23 February 2003
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 2003 10:25:01 +1100

GROUP:               Rob Berry, Barry Bucholtz, Bruce Cox, Gail D'Alton,
                     John Duranti, Don Haddin, Chris Lester, Rosemary
                     Lester, Jann and Ross Mulholland, Colin Scouler, Bill
                     Wakefield, Geoff Walker, Bob Way.
VESSEL/SKIPPER:      Pauletta / John Males with deckie.
WEATHER:             Fine and warm all day with no cloud cover - very
                     unusual for this boat trip.  Light N wind of 5 knots
                     early gradually freshening all day to 20 - 25 knots
                     from the N by late afternoon.
SEA:                 Slight sea of < 0.5 m with minimal swell in morning.
                     Slightly choppy sea of >1 m in afternoon.
ACTIVITY:            Sailed 07.20.  Headed SE from Pirates Bay past the
                     Hippolytes, then SE out past the shelf.  Very quiet
                     except for a moderate number of Short-tailed
                     Shearwaters.  The first stop was at 09.30 at 43
                     (superscript: o )14'S 148(superscript: o) 11'E in 131
                     fathoms with water temperature at 18.8(superscript: o)
                     C.  This temperature was very high for these waters.
                     However, there weren't many birds here.  Continued SE
                     and stopped at 10.15 in 218 fathoms (18.9(superscript:
                     o)C) at 43(superscript: o) 16'S 148(superscript: o)
                     13'E.  We drifted S for 4 - 5 nm over the next 2 1/4
                     hours.  While the activity was never frantic, it was
                     constant with regular waves of shearwaters,
                     albatrosses  and petrels coming through.  All the
                     species of Pterodromapetrels turned up here as we
                     drifted.  As has been the case before on the Feb / Mar
                     trip, Buller's was the most common albatross species.
                     The third (short) stop was at 1.45 at 43(superscript:
                     o) 13'S 148(superscript: o) 12'E in 140 fathoms (19.3
                     (superscript: o)C).  All the species of Pterodroma
                     petrels continued to pass by.  Travelled in and docked
                     at approx 16.10.
MAMMALS:             Australian Fur-Seals - at and near the Hippolytes.
BIRDS:               Quite good numbers of birds (although fewer
                     Short-tailed Shearwater than I would expect) with good
                     diversity.  The highlights of the day were the
                     Pterodroma petrels - MOTTLED, SOFT-PLUMAGED, GOULD'S
                     and WHITE-HEADED.

Little Penguin       2 (1).
Common Diving-Petrel 2 (1).
Giant-Petrel sp.     1.
Great-winged Petrel  100 (15).
MOTTLED PETREL       5 (1).
GOULD'S PETREL       10 (1).
White-chinned Petrel 60 (10).
Short-tailed Shearwater    1,000 (200).
Fluttering Shearwater      2 (1).
Hutton's Shearwater  1.
Wandering Albatross  10 (5).
Black browed Albatross     2 (1).
Shy Albatross        50 (7).
Yellow-nosed Albatross     5 (1).
Wilson's Storm-Petrel      3 (1).
Grey-backed Storm-Petrel   8 (2).
White-faced Storm-Petrel   40 (10).
Australasian Gannet  300 (7). Mostly inshore and around the Hippolytes
Black-faced Cormorant      900. Inshore and at the Hippolytes.
Kelp Gull            25. Along the shore and at the Hippolytes.
Silver Gull          20. Mostly along the shore and at the Hippolytes.
Crested Tern         50 (20).  Most were roosting on the shore.

2003 Trips Remaining:  21 September and 23 November.

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