Sunday, August 9, 2009

Food and Mail

The NOAA ship Oscar Elton Sette stopped by today and brought us some food. Even though Sunday is "fend for yourself" day when it comes to food, we decided it should be a big salad night, since everyone was probably going to have one anyway. I'm not really that big of a salad person, but I must say, it was pretty good. At least we've finally got more ingredients than pasta and beans (a slight exaggeration, but barely). It was great to get the mail today too. It's been a few months since our last mail. Thanks for the package, Dasha! The Kahana is also coming later this week to bring us even more food and supplies, so as usual it's either feast or famine around here.

We now have 2 fewer people on island. Jon, Austin, and Mike (shark catchers) left to catch the plane at Midway next week. Derek and Monica (monk seal biologists) also left to go to Laysan to do some seal work there for a week or so. We got 3 new visitors too. Charles, Bob, and Tenaya are here to also work with monk seals. They are going to relocate 6 weaned pups to Nihoa, where pups have a higher survival rate than French Frigate Shoals. A pup just got bit by a shark this week, the morning after it's mother left. This one had one of it's rear flippers bitten off, so it probably won't make it since even the perfectly healthy ones have a tough time. We were bummed that it was a pretty healthy female, since the population needs females more than males at this point. I hope the seals do well on Nihoa. They'll be satellite tagged so that NMFS (National Marine Fisheries Service) can keep track of them for a little while at least.

Therese and Whitney are banding a Christmas shearwater chick. These are some of the best mannered birds on the island. They don't try to bite while they are being banded.

This Laysan albatross chick was just watching the waves smash the seawall a few inches in front of it. There are only a couple dozen left on the island now. All of the black-footed albatross are gone.

One more baby turtle picture for you. I sat by a nest a couple nights ago and waited for them to hatch out. I only had to sit there about 45 minutes until they decided it was time.

This is a bird I haven't shown you before. It looks just like a Great frigatebird, except for the white spots under its wing and it is a bit smaller. This is a Lesser frigatebird and they usually are found in the southern hemisphere.


slune said...
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slune said...

I'm glad you liked the package even with blown up cheetos :) I hope you get to save the seals especially the girls :)

Seagull Steve said...

Nice LEFR picture....I was stoked to find one on my last day of Midway.