Los Farallones

Dispatches from Point Blue’s field station on the Farallon National Wildlife Refuge

Archive: Feb 2009

Winter rain, spring flowers

February 26, 2009
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In addition to providing PRBO biologists with drinking water for the year, winter rains cause SEFI’s plant life to burst into bloom. Wildflowers dot the typically brown landscape with a range of colors, from subtle purple to bright yellow, all against a backdrop of green, making late winter and early spring undoubtedly the most botanically […]

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Action on the Beach

February 25, 2009
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With only a handful of female elephant seals remaining on Sand Flat and Mirounga Beach, the bulls are vying for any last-minute mating opportunities. Bedlam Boy deserted the marine terrace harem with its one lingering cow, headed to Mirounga Beach which still had 8 cows, and kicked out former harem-master Mauricio. Not to be deterred, […]

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Powered by the Sun

February 22, 2009
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The Southeast Farallon Island research station is powered primarily by the sun’s energy. Eleven years ago, a solar array was installed on the roof of the powerhouse and a battery bank inside supplies the houses and workshops with electricity. Those solar panels and batteries served us very well for the past decade. This solar power […]

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Weaner City 2009

February 20, 2009
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This is every elephant seal lover’s favorite time of year. Plump, big-eyed weaned pups are now the most numerous age class of elephant seals on SEFI. The beaches and marine terrace are strewn with weaners who were left behind when their hungry mothers headed back out to sea after nursing their pups for 25 to […]

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West End Excursion

February 6, 2009
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Today, SEFI biologists made a special, all-day excursion over Jordan Channel to West End Island to check two elephant seal breeding beaches. This trip is a rarity and a privilege because West End receives an extra level of protection from human disturbance. Literally thousands of seabirds and California sea lions reside here, as well as […]

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