A Nice Day on the Water!

Anacortes
     Our first trip of the year from Anacortes started out with lots of wind from the southwest, forcing us to take a route that we might not have otherwise.  We started out by stopping at Pointer Island to check out several harbor seals on the rocks there.  Next we made our way through the inner San Juan Islands spotting several bald eagles along the way.  At the east side of Spieden Island (Green Point) we stopped to watch a big group of Steller sea lions swimming together in a very tight knit group.  This was a pretty cool experience to see all these sea lions lazily meandering around together as if they didn’t have a care in the world.  Next we cruised the shoreline of Spieden Island and spotted tons of mouflon sheep, including several rams.  At times the sheep would start sprinting up or down the hillsides!  We also spotted more bald eagles and harbor seals along the shoreline.  Captain Scott teamed up with other local captains to make the best search pattern possible and we eventually made our way up toward Sucia Island where we found more seals, and eagle, and a bunch of Steller sea lions hauled out on the rocks.  A few of the grumpy creatures fought with each other for no apparent reason except wanting to have some space to themselves.  We searched far and wide and as hard as we could today, but there just weren’t any whales to be found in the spots with calm seas today.  The bird watchers were blessed with plenty of birds, besides the eagles, including long-tailed ducks, buffleheads, white-winged scoters, surf scoters, western grebes, eared grebes, red-breasted mergansers, rhinoceros auklets, pigeon guillemots, common murres, common loons, a black oystercatcher, a great blue heron, and a belted kingfisher.  We had tons of variety!  Naturalist Bart Rulon  

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