Los Farallones

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


Moderate northwest winds and solid cloud cover today. There weren’t a whole lot of birds around today, but we managed to find a few interesting things. In the morning we had a nice flight of shearwaters, dominated by Buller’s, followed by Pink-footeds and Sooties. Other finds were Surf Scoter, Ring-billed Gull and Thayer’s Gull.

Thayer’s Gull, Greater White-fronted Goose and Ring-billed Gull (c) Dettling

Over the past couple of weeks we have started to see a larger variety of gulls, which is to be expected as we transition into the winter season. Unfortunately for the passerine lovers, that means there is a decreasing chance of seeing a rare songbird. Sometimes it’s a challenge to keep alert, and ready to identify that next rarity. Today’s bird list is below.

Location: Southeast Farallon Island
Observation date: 10/28/08
Number of species: 38
Greater White-fronted Goose 7
Cackling Goose 5
Surf Scoter 5
Pacific Loon 1
Eared Grebe 47
Pink-footed Shearwater 21
Buller’s Shearwater 94
Sooty Shearwater 6
Brown Pelican 146
Brandt’s Cormorant X
Pelagic Cormorant X
Peregrine Falcon 3
Killdeer 1
Willet 1
Whimbrel 2
Black Turnstone 65
Ring-billed Gull 1
California Gull 542
Herring Gull 5
Thayer’s Gull 3
Common Murre X
Pigeon Guillemot X
Cassin’s Auklet X
Rhinoceros Auklet X
Band-tailed Pigeon 1
Burrowing Owl 3
Black Phoebe 6
Say’s Phoebe 3
Rock Wren 2
House Wren 1
American Pipit 1
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 3
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon’s) 1
Chipping Sparrow 2
Song Sparrow 1
White-throated Sparrow 1
Dark-eyed Junco (Oregon) 2
Western Meadowlark 4