Monday, November 30, 2009

DB Post Tuesday 11.30.09

I redid Right Spot's cordon at 0545. When I got back in daylight I found that she has FINALLY begun her molt. Those little pin point breaks on her throat and chest from yesterday, had enlarged and the rest of the chest looks ready to go. She has remained there all day. I'll be returning shortly.

On my first look at Rabbit Island at 0714 I found M38 and Buster at the left end of the beach, Kolohe at 3BS and Sadie at the far right end of the beach. Of course it would take all morning to actually get all those ID's. At 1024, RIP hauled out to 1BS and spent the day near M38 and Buster. On a pan at 1037 I found Mikala just hauling out at the right end. She would move up and join Sadie for the day.

Team Billand reported a 50% molted Kermit at WP at 0600.

I went to Sandy Beach at 1800 and sat there waiting for just the right amount of darkness, and lack of people , to pick up the rope. Since it was pouring rain it was only us Monk Seals out there. To my complete surprise Right Spot just up did two series of galumphs and entered the water , swimming off into the darkness at 1821. I want to believe that she has come to her senses and that she will swim to Rabbit Island and complete her molt, but...... yeah....right, like That's gonna' happen !!!! Only Right Spot Knows .

Right Spot


Sunday, November 29, 2009

DB Post 11.29.09 Sunday

Right Spot was once again waiting for me when I pulled into Sandy Beach at 0545. She has remained there all day. She has a couple of very tiny breaks on the throat and chest, but has a very long way to go on her molt.

The highlight of the day came when my wife and I did the 0800 Spitting Cave check. Lo and Behold we found Duke and Buster frolicking and feeding (mostly frolicking). They were all over the place and their dives were totally erratic. This marks the first time that Duke has been documented anywhere but Rabbit Island. Buster was at Spitting Cave yesterday, so I presume Duke got there on his own. Duke had been MIA from RI for a couple of days.

The Rabbit Island cast for today began with Sadie snoozin' 30 ft left of 1BS. She would be joined at 1041 by Mikala.

Team Billand reported a 40% molted Kermit at WP at 0647, and called again at 1300 with the report of 2AW once again at Tracks.

I picked up the Right Spot rope at 1845. She was still there.

Duke & Buster
Mikala & Sadie
Right Spot

Saturday, November 28, 2009

DB Post Saturday 11.28.09

I know it's beginning to sound like "Groundhog Day", but the day started off with Right Spot at SB at 0545. Still no evidence of molt. She has remained there all day, amidst lots of poop. Lesley said that downwind was not a good place to be !

The Rabbit Island cast for today began with M38 at 1BS, at 0653. I've been seeing him every morning but he is usually gone by the time I get back to the pier. Today, he remained all day. According to my records he is due to molt, which might explain his stay this time around.

When I got back to Makai Pier at 0945 I found RIP, 20 ft left of M38. There was no observed interaction, and RIP remained there all day.

On a pan at 1034 I found Mikala lying near RIP. She hadn't been there a second ago. She moved off 10 ft left of RIP and remained there all day. There was no observed interaction.

Team Billand called at 0600 with the report of Kermit, once again fronting #1708 at White Plains. They checked in again at 1350 with the report of 2AW at Tracks.

Colleen called at 1346 to report that Rocky is home ! She was at the Black Point end of Diamond Head, at a location which was impossible to get around without coming close to her. Rocky does that............alot ! Colleen said Rocky was lookin' chubby. When I saw the photos my reaction was .....Wow !!! That girl is definitely lookin' chunky ! Hmmmmm?

I got mail from Val on Molokai, after I sent out the dailies yesterday. She had a shot of Benny ! I'd last seen him at Sandy Beach at 1700 on Thanksgiving day, and the next day, he was at Molokai. Amazing !!

I picked up Right Spot's rope on the way home from an airport run, at 1930. She was snoozin'
Mikala RIP & M38
Right Spot
Kermit .. rotting/molting

Friday, November 27, 2009

DB Post Friday 11.27.09

Right Spot spent yet another day at Sandy Beach. She still shows no sign of starting to molt, but the behavior is certainly there.

The Rabbit Island cast began with M38 up in the Morning Glory to the left of 1BS, at 0700. When Buster hauled out to 1BS he and M38 had a bit of a spat, but both quickly went to snooze mode. When I got back to Makai Pier at 1010 , M38 was no longer there, and I did not see him again today. I did , however, find that Mikala had joined Buster and they would remain there together all day.

On a pan at 1010 I found Sadie just moving up into the Morning Glory at the right end of the beach. She would move down to cool off at 1145, and remained there the rest of the day.

Team Billand reported Kermit at WP at 0600, and called again at 1540 with the report of 2AW at Tracks.

Right Spot remains at Sandy Beach. I picked up the rope at 1845.

mikala & buster

sadie right spot

Ho'ailona (KP2) Update from the Mainland

Aloha good people... here is an update from the folks looking after Mr. Adorable... I apologize this should have been posted 2 days ago, but between the holiday, work schedule and life in general time got away from me. What is special about any of this, is the common thread between us .... the care, love and dedication to the Hawaiian Monk Seals and specifically.... Ho'ailona, KP2 !

Hi All,

I just wanted to send a quick email to everyone (please send to any others who may be interested) that Hoailona made it to Santa Cruz safe and sound. He is currently swimming and hauling out in his "sealarium" that is maintaining some balmy Hawaii temps (water = 22-27C) and air temps that have been matching well. After his 21 hour transport (including 10 hours of LA and assorted traffic), he took in 2 pounds of herring at 3 am PT. Everyone is exhausted but the seal came through bright, attentive and bouncy. (Actually brighter and bouncier than us
this morning.)

We'll be working on getting his feeding up to pre-transport levels. Today he seems more curious about people that food. Thanks to everyone who made this transport go off without a hitch and for the opportunity for working with this seal.
The aloha spirit was quite evident. I'll send a couple of pictures from the transport in the next email. We have a lot to be thankful for - so Happy Thanksgiving!.

Best from Santa Cruz,
Terrie and the mainland monk seal team

Thursday, November 26, 2009

DB Post Thanksgiving Day 09

The overriding rememberance of this Thanksgiving Day is the thought that I BEEN BENNIED !!! My day began with a call from posse person Mike at 0521, from Sandy Beach, stating that "both the animals are still here" . Tanx Eh , Mike !. When I arrived at 0543 I found Right Spot and Benny right where I'd left them last night, but Benny was alert and heading for the water, and as I put up the rope, he departed. Right Spot would remain there the rest of the day.

When I got back to Sandy Beach at 0622 I found that Irma had hauled out at the far east end of the beach. She would remain there all day.

On my first look at Rabbit Island I found M38 and Sadie just moving down out of the Morning Glory, 50 ft left of 1BS, and a 0720 I found Kolohe and Duke at the right end of the beach. Both would remain there all day.

At 0811 I got a call from Betty at Hanauma Bay reporting that one of the tourists had reported a swimming seal . When I arrived and looked from the overview, I found nobody. I half joking said that science wouldn't allow it but I knew it was Benny. The answer would be found when I got to Spitting Cave (ha,ha,ha).

I arrived at Spitting Cave at at 0835, and at 0837 here came Benny around the point swimming into Maunalua Bay. He was in travel mode, and there was ample time to see his facial scars. He was to the second point to my right and I assumed he was on his way to Diamond Head and points beyond, however, he turned and headed back toward the point. I lost him in the glare, but called to advise the Hanauma Bay people to be on the lookout, and after a half hour more at Spitting Cave, I returned to Hanauma Bay. Though I stayed there for an additional half hour I found nobody, and after a short stay at Blowhole to see if he might haul out again at Sandy Beach, I returned to Makai Pier.

On my second look at Rabbit Island I found that RIP and Mikala would join the cast. After a brief spat between RIP and M38 as Mikala hauled out , M38 would depart. I did not see him again today.

At 1056 I got a call from Tracy reporting that another animal, in addition to the two that were already there, had just hauled out. When I arrived at 1109 there was Benny , once again along side Right Spot. After some PR and cordon adjustment I returned to Makai Pier.

At 1209 I got a call from one of the posse members I've given cards to, reporting that "there was a small animal on the rocks at Sandy Beach, in front of "where the other one was" getting worked by the surf on the rocks. As we talked she said that everything seemed okay now and that the small animal was now in the water. When I asked which way the animal was traveling, she said it was headed in a Makapuu direction, right along the beach. I packed up at the pier and hurriedly made my way to Sandy Beach, knowing what I was going to find.

Sure enough, on arrival I found a crowd of people surrounding the cordon around Irma and Benny lying along side her. The people had all followed him as he moved down the beach. After lots of PR, and some cordon adjustment I returned to Makai Pier. On my 1500 check all Sandy Beach cast members were in snooze mode. I'll be returning shortly to reassess.

Team Billand called at 0632 to report a D#1 , molting Kermit at White Plains, and then again at 1124 to report 2AW at Tracks.

When I got to Irma's location at 1830, she was still here, however Benny was gone. Right Spot was also still at her location at 1845. I picked up the ropes and called it a day at 1900.

DB Post 11.26.09 (cont)

Right Spot & Benny
Benny & Irma
Kermit beginning his Molt

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Turkey Day!



DB Post Wednesday 11.25.09

Off and on rain episodes (mostly on in the afternoon) made it a less than ideal day, but there was a bumper crop of critters.

When I pulled into Sandy Beach there were the dynamic duo, Benny and Right Spot , right where I'd left them. Lesley braved the rain for a while there. Thank you very much. They were still there on my 1500 check. I'll be returning shortly.

It took her a while , but Irma showed up again today. On my 0920 look at Irma's there was her "N3ness" approximately 100 ft east of the Kealahou traffic light at Irma's. She has remained there all day, and once again, I'll be checking on her shortly. Mark , from PIFSC called at 1111 to advise that he had done Irma's right side N3 bleach. I checked it at 1500, and it looked great.

The Rabbit Island cast would begin on my first look at 0648 with M38 at 3BS. When I got back to Makai Pier at 1025 he was no longer there , and I did not see him again today.

At 0700 I became aware of a tiny sliver of new belly up in the grass at the right end . It would take until midday but it turned out to be Kolohe.

When I got back to MP at 1025 I found Buster, along side Mikala, at 1BS at the left end, and Duke was hiding amongst the Duke sized rocks at the right end of the bleach. He was the rock with the N18.

Team Billand reported Kermit once again at WP, where he appeared to have overnighted again.

Another Team Billand call at 1632 reported a fully molted 2AW at Tracks.

At 1835 on my Irma check I picked up the rope and left the signs. Irma was still there. At 1845 Benny and Right Spot also showed no interest in leaving. I picked up my rope and went home.