Saturday, September 18, 2010

Days Are Scrolls

"Days are scrolls: write on them only what you want remembered," Bachya ibn Pakuda, 11th century (copied out of the prayer book this morning). I'm in Florida, the usual mis-planned family trip.

I'd rather think about home:

On the ferry home from Vancouver Island last week I saw a humpback whale.

OrcaLab has posted a blog entry about the A30s, the orca family we followed most of the day on the 11th. There's a gorgeous audio file included in the entry.

Decided the many small seabirds I saw flocking and floating early in the month could maybe have been auklets. No reason to think so really, but I'd rather think of them as Somethings rather than Unknowns. Update on September 25: Barbara Blackies thinks my skillion floating and flying seabirds were sooty shearwaters, she heard there was a shearwater event on the outer coast earlier this month.

Tim McNulty emailed that Nalini Nadkarni, the canopy biologist, says branches in the high canopy she cleared of mosses were essentially still bare ten years later. So I might have to stand several decades with my arms out to grow a moss curtain in the understory of the rain forest.

JL from COASST emailed that there is an algal bloom developing, and "there are white wing and surf scoters on beaches in the Kalaloch area. The majority were still alive, but there were also dead birds on each beach that she checked. We now have a similar report from the mouth of the Hoh River. We have no definite information about beaches north or south of that area." She asks all the volunteers who work beaches on the outer coast to go do a survey as soon as possible and report on conditions. I'm in Florida now, and working next week. Can't do my beaches until maybe Sunday next. By then it will already be known how large a 'wreck' is in progress.

Home Monday night. Back to work at the college on Tuesday.

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