Date: July 20, 2012
Tonight’s Location: Bullard’s Beach State Park, Bandon, Oregon
Weather: brilliant sunshine
Temperature: start 57º
Wildlife count: Gray Whales, Harbor Seals, Elephant Seals, California Sea Lions, Steller Sea Lions, Pine Squirrel
Birds: Osprey, Bald Eagle, Golden Eagle, Steller Jay, Cedar Waxwings, Pigeon Guillemots, Pacific Loons, Pelagic Cormorants, Double-crested Cormorants, Wrentit, Spotted Towhee, Red-tailed Hawk, Swainson’s Thrush
We arrived at Simpson Reef, and immediately the sun shone. It wasn’t long before the sweatshirts came off and we spent the day in t-shirts. (I’m glad I had on my FWS shirt.)
The highlights were 2 Gray Whales that spent the day in view, swimming, eating, and simply enjoying life. We believe we were watching a mother and calf. An Osprey fished above us, pausing to hover over the water; a Bald Eagle soared overhead several times; and a Golden Eagle flew over – a first for us in Oregon. What a treat!
The 300 folks that visited were very interested and seemed to enjoy being there. It was a great time! There were several Germans, French, and Danes visiting. In one French family, the 8 year old girl did not speak English, so John spent a lot of time with the family of 4 on the scopes. After the girl saw the whale, I led them to our display, where we have a Gray Whale model and a section of baleen. As I shared, the mother translated for her daughter. When the girl realized the size of the whale (it was fun to attempt to translate from feet to meters, pounds to kilograms), her eyes sparkled and she got excited. It was neat to see her understanding.
Dinner was pulled pork sandwiches that we had left-over from the Dutch Oven pork shoulder. We walked the loops with Ron and Linda and then collapsed.