Tufted Puffin-Adult Summer

Copyright © 2013 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

Tufted Puffin-Adult SummerThis is the first time I’ve ever seen a Puffin in the wild! I went on a Birding trip out to the Farallon Islands 27 miles outside of San Francisco in the Pacific Ocean. We weren’t allowed on the island-only Biologists are allowed on the island, but we cruised all around them and then we went out to deeper water from there. Along the way we saw 3 Tufted Puffin.

There are only 50 pairs of Tufted Puffin nesting on the Islands at this time, but there thousands of gulls, Common Murre’s, lots of Cormorants, seals, sea lions, and one lone Gannet. In deeper water we saw Hump Back whales, and a Blue Whale too.

I saw so many new birds on the trip, and the one bird I hoped to see was the Tufted Puffin. I went home a happy sailor just seeing one. I hoped I got one good shot.
The weather was overcast, and to get the shutter speed I needed I really pushed the ISO. Shooting from the boat was challenging. I would focus on a bird then the boat would go up or down and my focus point was off. I didn’t start to get the rhythm of the sea til near the end of the day, and then there wasn’t much to see as we were pushing hard to get back.
We were out at sea for nearly 9 hours.  I went with Alvaro’s Adventures out of Half Moon Bay. I would definitely go again.

Alvaro is a Biologist, and he had two expert birders along for the tour. One was on the starboard side calling out birds and mammals, and the other on the Port side doing the same. I don’t think we missed anything flying or swimming on our route.

I’ve not been able to spend much time online lately. #1 Grandson is very busy and takes all my attention these days. I’m looking at your  photos when I can and I’ll catch up soon!

Nikon D700| Nikkor 70-300mm VR@ 280mm| f9| 1/1000s| ISO 1250| Manual priority| Matrix Metering| Hand-held