Sunday, August 22, 2010

Turtles and Seals

It was a busy week with 2 NOAA ships here. The Oscar Elton Sette came to pick up Shawn and Darren since the seal monitoring season is pretty much done. Mark stayed back and will monitor them for a couple more weeks. The Hi'ialakai was also here doing some reef surveys and various underwater things. Pablo also hitched a ride with the Hi'ialakai so it's just Sarah, Phillip, and Keith for my volunteers now. Tiphanie and Carlos are still working with the sharks.

We've been doing the usual work around here- saving turtle hatchlings that don't crawl toward the water, pulling weeds, counting/banding birds, picking up marine debris, and that sort of thing.

I'm getting ready to take my vacation. Even though I enjoy it out here, after 10 months out here, it will be a nice break. I am really lucky for being able to live out here, but with living in my office and pretty much being able to only get 1000 yards away, I'd like to get back to the traffic, politics, high gas prices, the general rat race, etc. to recharge my batteries. I'm leaving in about a month and Ty will be out here for a while watching the place. I hope he doesn't get evacuated again. That was a bit of trouble, with the C-130 picking everyone up and him having to burn a couple of freezers full of rotten food and all.

I've got extra pictures this week, just because the newly weaned seal pups were playing on the beach right outside the barracks window. I couldn't decide which pics to use so I'm just putting up a bunch.

Pablo waving goodbye to Tern Island.

Keith, Phillip, and Sarah are digging up a turtle nest on East Island. We had to get a data logger (monitors nest conditions) that was put into the egg chamber when the turtle laid the eggs.

I found this turtle on the runway during my morning walk and set it on the beach. It was pretty lively and crawled right in.

This was the second turtle hatchling I found which was wandering in the weeds. It's amazing these tiny little twerps make it out there.

Here's a least tern that's visiting the island. There was another one, but it died over a week ago. We'll send it off for necropsy to find out what happened.
Here's the newly weaned pups by the barracks. They are only a couple months old. They don't play very long before they need a nap. I wish the sun was behind me for better lighting. Oh well, beggars can't be choosers.


Anonymous said...

As usual, great shots! Nice job.


Barb said...

WOW! Great pictures!
I've been a volunteer on Midway and people there told me about your blog; great!
We don't seem to have any turtle hatchings on Midway, but I've written about a lot of other natural history topics on my Midway "edu-blog," which you & your followers might enjoy:

aloha, Barb

slune said...

You should record an audio of the seal pups playing, and upload it... I'm sure people would like that :) miss them so much... oh, yeah, miss you too :) D.

Pete Leary said...

Thanks, Buzz & Barb. And nice blog Barb. Anyone who wants to see a good Midway blog should check it out.
The seals haven't been playing outside the window since last week, so I can't record them right now. Maybe they'll be back.

c130wm said...

I see you have a picture of a Jeep that was left there by the "Coast Guard" (or the Navy) but do you have any pictures of the Coast Guard landing a C-130 on a wet coral, 3000 foot runway to save the lives of ten volunteers from a impending class 2 or 3 hurricane that was about to hit tern because no one else would come and get them? You guys do good work so dose the Coast Guard so please don't point fingers for littering when you cant be sure who did it.

megan Carter said...

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