22 July 2014

Sea Watching

I joined a seabird research in Sagami Bay and off the Jogashima island.
As we moved farther out to sea, the land scenery got lower and lower and it eventually vanished under the sea horizon.  Nothing could be seen but sea. It was a very calm day and the sea surface was very flat.  In the beginning, there were just a few streaked shearwaters flying around us.
Then we found a current rip and followed it along.
Suddenly, fishes were making ripples and we were surrounded by lots of streaked shearwaters flying, diving and floating.


ちょうど板橋区立美術館への往復を利用して、「海鳥の行動と生態―その海洋生活への適応(綿貫 豊 著)」を読み終えたばかりだった。ウミツバメ類やミズナギドリ類は、植物プランクトンが動物プランクトンに食べられるときに出すジメチルスルフォイドの臭いに惹きつけられて餌のある海域にやってくるという。そして餌場に来てからは目視で探索する。多くの鳥が餌を採っているところは、周辺の他の鳥も惹きつけるので鳥山ができるのだそうだ。

Japanese Murrelet in non-breeding plumage.

The highlight during this research was the brown noddy sitting on an orange buoy!  It's a very smart looking bird!  It sat there for long enough time for us to get closer and observe carefully.  Lots of streaked sharewaters were flying behind it.  

We also found a kind of ray!  
エイの仲間が泳いでいるのも見た! 残念ながら頭と尾の形ははっきり見えなかったけれど、風呂敷みたいな四角い体、ときおり水面上に出てくる胸びれはよくわかった。こんな生き物、本当に海にいるんだ! 背びれをピンと海上に突き出し、威厳たっぷりに泳ぐアカシュモクザメ?も数匹見られた。

You will never get bored of watching the sea.  (I know that I was supposed to look for special seabirds...) but watching the sea makes you think of and remember lots of things. 


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