Tour will seek seabirds, seals

Written by Triplicate Staff August 23, 2013 09:44 am

Elephant seals, named for their trunk-like snouts, will be among the likely attractions during the Sunday morning tour.
Elephant seals, named for their trunk-like snouts, will be among the likely attractions during the Sunday morning tour. Photo courtesy of Michael L. Baird
Wildlife biologist will lead Sunday tour starting at the harbor

This is prime shorebird migration season with numerous species of birds traveling the Pacific Flyway to be sighted along the coast of Del Norte County.

Join wildlife biologist and seabird researcher Craig Strong on Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to noon for a field trip of discovery, “Coastal Birds and Marine Mammals.

Emphasis will be on birds and marine mammals that can be viewed from the shore and their life history stories. The group will carpool from Whaler’s Island, with stops along the way, to Point St. George. There will be minimal walking.

Expected highlights and sightings are marbled murrelets, pelagic cormorants and elephant seals. Possible scope viewings at Castle Rock National Wildlife Refuge are rhinoceros auklets and tufted puffins.

Participants should meet at 8:30 a.m. in the Crescent City Harbor behind the Chartroom Restaurant. Call Sue Calla for more information, 707-465-6191 or 707-951-9089.

Strong has devoted 35 years to conducting studies and monitoring populations of coastal wildlife species from both the sea and land. His work has taken him from the Olympic Peninsula to Antarctica.

Strong owns and operates Crescent Coastal Research, a wildlife consulting business in Crescent City. He currently surveys marbled murrelet populations for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

He has taught oceanography and marine mammal science courses at the College of the Redwoods, Del Norte, campus. He has led past field trips for the Audubon Society and regional bird festivals.

Tolowa Coast summer programs are sponsored by the Redwood Parks Association and Tolowa Dunes Stewards in collaboration with the California State Parks and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. 

This field trip is co-sponsored by the Lake Earl branch of the Redwood Region Audubon Society.