Monterey Bay

Having visited Monterey Bay dozens of times, I was blessed to encounter many new taxa, along with re-acquaintance with numerous familiar plants, birds and marine mammals. Of note were sightings of thirty one Southern Sea Otters, some great lichens adapted to marine salty air, and a variety of kelp species. Even though i have had the earlier opportunity to conduct scientific research in the dunes area, this trip offered my first visit to the Fort Ord Dunes State Park; that visit surprised me with the massive surfside ongoing dunes erosion, which left the coastal zone virtually depauperate of plantlife. Access to the native area atop the dunes was severely limited at the time of my visit. It nevertheless gave me a time data point into the state of dunes here. The native vegetation stabilizing dunes tops were in seemingly great condition even though no path was open to view most of that coastal scrub close up.

Posted on February 05, 2017 07:05 PM by c_michael_hogan c_michael_hogan

Observations

Photos / Sounds

What

Brandt's Cormorant (Urile penicillatus)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 3, 2017 02:29 PM PST

Photos / Sounds

What

Harbor Seal (Phoca vitulina)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 3, 2017 01:08 PM PST

Description

This seal was swimming in the near shore open waters of Monterey Bay

Photos / Sounds

What

Long-billed Curlew (Numenius americanus)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 4, 2017 01:49 PM PST

Description

At water edge of Elkhorn Slough

Photos / Sounds

What

Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 4, 2017 02:01 PM PST

Photos / Sounds

What

Brown Pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 4, 2017 01:46 PM PST

Description

On a sandbar within Elkhorn Slough

Photos / Sounds

What

California Sea Lion (Zalophus californianus)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 3, 2017 02:59 PM PST

Description

At the rock jetty end of the pier

Photos / Sounds

What

Southern Sea Otter (Enhydra lutris ssp. nereis)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 2017

Description

I am guessing this Southern Sea Otter is dining on abalone in the open waters of Monterey Bay

Photos / Sounds

What

Seaweed Flies (Genus Fucellia)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 3, 2017 02:43 PM PST

Description

A number of these sandflies were active near some large beached kelp

Photos / Sounds

What

Sunburst Lichens and Allies (Order Teloschistales)

Observer

c_michael_hogan

Date

February 5, 2017 10:35 AM PST

Description

Growing on a wooden fence

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