Thursday, July 28, 2011

Day 80: Guadalupe Version

Okay, we're on a roll with our storm-petrels. We netted again last night and caught yet another unusual visitor. This time it's a subspecies of the Leach's Storm-petrel. We catch Leach's here regularly and we know small numbers of them breed here. Leach's are distinguished from Ashy Storm-petrels by their white rump patch, longer wings, and larger head and bill. We were confused by this little one because it had the while rump of a Leach's but its wing was too short and its head, bill and overall size were smaller than an Ashy. After consulting our books we determined that this was in fact an individual from a subspecies of Leach's that breeds on Guadalupe Island in Mexico! This is the first time we have documented this subspecies on the island and the first time it's been seen this far north in California. Not a bad night!

No comments:

Post a Comment