If you're interested in using any of these photographs, please contact me. Send an e-mail to naturalhistoryphotos(at)gmail.com. Thanks!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Blues off Bodega

We encountered a few Blue Whales (Balaenoptera musculus) during the pelagic trip on 15 October 2017.  These photos were taken ~20 miles off Bodega Head.

It's hard to get a sense of scale, but Blue Whale spouts can reach 10-12 meters (32-40 feet) in height! 

Two different individuals (above and below), showing differently shaped dorsal fins and different patterns of mottling:

The broad flukes rising out of the water as the whale dives:

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

On their way to Australia

Short-tailed Shearwater (Ardenna tenuirostris) photographed offshore of Bodega Head on 15 October 2017.

This species is an uncommon fall/winter visitor to our area.  They spend their winter (our summer) in the North Pacific (with concentrations off Alaska), then migrate south to breeding sites around Australia. 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Stealth approach

Northern Right Whale Dolphin (Lissodelphis borealis) approaching the bow of the New Sea Angler during a pelagic trip to Cordell Bank on 15 October 2017.

Here's another view, with only the backs showing above the surface (note the lack of dorsal fins):

For more information about and additional photos of Northern Right Whale Dolphins, review the posts called "Smooth" on 5 September 2012 and "Bow riding" on 26 October 2012.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Breaking the surface

A few more dolphin photos to help you get through your week:


Pacific White-sided Dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) near Cordell Bank (~27 miles offshore) on 15 October 2017.

Many thanks to Rick and Owen of the New Sea Angler for hosting the Redwood Regional Ornithological Society boat trip.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Dolphin leap

Pacific White-sided Dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) photographed near Cordell Bank on 15 October 2017.

Thursday, October 12, 2017


Up at 1 a.m. for a fire update and a check on evacuation status, and noticed the moon rising on the eastern horizon:

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Smoky sunrise

Smoky sunrise from Cotati on 10 October 2017