February 9 -10, 2022 – Baja California Sur, Mexico.
Kayaking with Wildlife in the Sea of Cortez
Whale! Someone had spotted a whale not too far from our camping area on the western shore of the Sea of Cortez north of Agua Verde. Penny and Don already had their kayaks in the water and were in pursuit. Liesbet was the next to put in, but she found a pod of dolphins and was paddling with them. By the time Greg and I launched Pirogue Bleue we had missed the dolphins, and Penny and Don were long out of sight. I figured we’d never catch up to the whale. So we paddled on, saw some grebes and some pelicans, and then off in the distance between us and the shore a large splash. It’s a whale, Greg exclaimed. We paddled towards the splash, my camera at the ready. I snapped a few pics, it went under, lost it! Still, we continued in its direction thinking our sighting from a distance was all we’d get, until it rose again mere yards in front of the kayak. Greg kept moving forward while I worried that it would surface right under us, but unfortunately our whale excitement for the day was over.
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We paddled on and found some birds.
And then on the way back, we found another pod of dolphins.
Islas San Damian & San Cosme
With the whale experience checked off our list we were ready to see some Boobies (the avian kind). The sea of Cortez is the year-round home to Blue-footed Boobies. Penny said she saw some Boobies on the far side of Isla San Damian, a small island we could see in the distance from our campsite. So the next day we put the kayak in the water again and headed out.
After not having much luck finding Boobies at San Damian, we paddled over to the larger nearby island, San Cosme. Success! Birds abounded.
Back at the campground, we thought our day of birding was done until we heard a commotion on the beach where we were camped. A flock of pelicans had trapped a school of 6-inch fish by the shore. Every time the school changed direction it was chased back. Mobs of pelicans were diving into the shallow water. Fish leapt onto the shore. Pelicans fought over their catches. It was a raucous, riotous frenzy.
It is quite possible that I will be sharing this post on Wild Bird Wednesday. Check out this blog hop to see what birds people have seen recently all over the world.