Saturday, July 18, 2009

foggy fishing

Coffee of the Day: French Roast Colombian. Mmm, mmm, good.
Bird of the Day: ring-billed gull
Invisi-bird Status: Still no new update in the box. Last one was from 6/18. Unit 3 reported that there was one from 6/26 at the Visitor Center. That's the one quoted in the Daily News article . Number actually seen by me = zero. I think the northernmost pair have moved on.
Strange Wrack Item of the Day: part of a boat name plate with a Mass. Vessel registration sticker on it.

There was another kids' fishing event today, this one at the north end of the refuge. It seemed like a much smaller event than the last one. Poles and bait were ready when the kiddos arrived. The weather was not so welcoming. The fog was so thick you'd a thought the world ended a hundred yards south of the 0.1 mile marker and a few yards north of the island "center". Somebody commented that it was too bad the kids didn't have nicer weather for learning to fish. I pointed out that this is realistic fishing weather.

Besides the fog, there was a steady breeze. That kept both birds and greenheads down. Almost nothing was flying except least terns and common terns. Vast numbers of gulls roosted in the sand just south of me. Most of them looked like they were asleep. When the fog lifted a tiny bit, I was able to distinguish the mix of species in the roost -- mainly herring gulls and ring-billed gulls but also a few Bonaparte's and laughing gulls, all ruled over by a few great black backs, the burgomeister gull.

Most of the ring-billed gulls were in various stages of molt or of immature plumages but a trio of them who landed basically at my feet had the most perfect pristine plumage (say that three times fast) I have ever seen. Bright white. Crisp blacks and grays. Seriously, they looked like they were specially imported for a ring-billed gull photo shoot. Beautiful birds.

While I was gathering driftwood to extend my stick fence down to the water as the tide went out, I noticed something strange in the wrack. It was a white plastic rectangle that looked like it had broken off from a much longer piece of plastic. On it was the letter U in black and an orange Mass. Vessel registration sticker. I picked it up and handed it in to the Gatehouse on my way out just in case it had anything to do with the boat that crashed into the jetty.

There were very few visitors today. I only had to intercept 3 people. Two of them were together and actually wanted to hear what I had to say and were impressed by the effort to protect the plovers. The other one was grumpy but compliant. The fog kept the visitors in line I guess.

Then it was off to lunch at the Fish Tale. No fish tales were being told at the counter but the food was great.

1 comment:

Kim said...

French Roast rocks!! I like my coffee strong and the French Roast is the strongest I can get second to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts Turbo.

Sorry to hear about the fog. We had that in Central Mass too this morning but it finally lifted. At least the fog kept the trespassers in line though. ;o)