It’s all about the numbers (August 17-23, 2008)

August 24th, 2008  

Dedication

For the remainder of this summer, these blogs are dedicated to the memory of Rick Dalton, brother-in-law but more important, friend. Aloha nui loa Rick.

Return of the wahine

Last week we received a heads-up from George Balazs that one of the females who nested this summer had been sighted somewhere along the North Shore of Oahu, and he was putting us on notice to keep an eye out for returnees at our dive sites. The monitoring team at the French Frigate Shoals uses a Mototool to inscribe a nesting honu’s carapace with an identifying number that is then painted white so that it is visible from some distance. (The procedure is harmless, since the shell has no nerves; think of it as similar to clipping your nails.)

407

About halfway through our very next dive, what should we see but a honu with a white number on her shell: 407.

2008 nester 407


2008 nester 407 at Honokowai, just arrived from the French Frigate Shoals. She’s 2001 Turtle 124 in our database.


Click image to enlarge


We first encountered this turtle in 2001, and we recorded her in 2002 and 2003 as well. She was big enough for us to suspect she was a female when we first met her, but this is the first confirmation of that. We don’t have an entry for her in 2004, the last year we have entered complete data for the turtles we sighted. She could have nested that year, but we won’t know her history until George has had time to dig up her records.

487

Things that shake your confidence: sighting a honu with the number 487 etched on her shell on the following dive.

For a few moments, I questioned what I’d seen the day before. (Later Ursula confessed having the same reaction.) Could we possibly have made a monumental goof? We’re getting on, these things happen. As soon as I got a good look at her profile, however, I knew that this was a different turtle.

2008 nester 487


2008 nester 487 (not 407), on the right. Enlarge the picture to see her etched number.


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Our database records her as 2003 Turtle 15, who was nester 339 in 2004, and notes that she is laid-back, meaning that she is not at all shy. She certainly sat for the portrait above, and was still settled down on the reef when we passed by there much later in the dive. That’s when I noticed that she had a tag on her left hind flipper, conveniently clean and in a position that I could read easily. She’s 665C.

The watch list

So on two successive dives we spotted two honu who made nests in the French Frigate Shoals this summer. Neither of them were on our watch list, which we prepare and send to George Balazs at the beginning of each nesting season. This year, his team monitoring the nests on East Island spotted only two of our Honokowai ohana: Pu’ipu’i (U 249) and Molokailimpus (V 133).

We first met Pu’ipu’i in 1995. She has always been a shy turtle but we did manage to record her tag. Since then we have seen her in years when she has not been nesting, which she seems to do every even-numbered year. It’s still possible that we’ll see her when she returns this year, but we’re running out of dives.

Molokailimpus got her name because one of the tags she wears (T50245) came from Colin Limpus, the prominent Australian sea turtle researcher, and was attached on Molokai in 1991. We met her in 1999, and saw her last in 2003. She turned up nesting at East Island in 2006 and now again this summer. Although we don’t see her anymore, we still consider her a part of the Honokowai ohana.

The ‘ea love Honokowai

I know that just last week I was marvelling at our luck in seeing three different Hawaiian hawksbills in such a limited time and area. Imagine my surprise when I caught sight of another hawksbill tearing up Reef 2. I knew immediately we hadn’t seen this ‘ea yet this summer because even from a distance I could see the glint of tags on her hind flippers. “Ake!” I thought to myself. We knew Ake had been tagged in 2005 and in 2007 she was seen at Old Airport Beach just a bit south of our dive site. Surely this had to be her. She was mighty big, even bigger than Kiniana, who up until then had been the biggest hawksbill we’d seen.

Left profile of ‘ea 1D66


‘Ea 1D66, a new hawksbill at Honokowai, with saddleback wrasse. If you enlarge the picture you can see a short length of monofilament line, which ends in a small hook embedded in her left shoulder. It will eventually rust out and doesn’t appear to be a major hindrance.


Click image to enlarge


She was busy trying to get at something under the corals and paid us no attention, so I was able to get some good pictures while Ursula shot video. I managed to get a decent left profile, which normally would be essential in order to identify her in our database, but here we had tags. Nice clean ones too, and she was obligingly displaying them so that I could read them easily and even take clear pictures of them without having to get close.

Tags 1D66 and 1D67


Tags 1D66 and 1D67, cropped and enlarged for your viewing pleasure.


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When we got back to shore, both Ursula and I were sure we’d seen Ake for the first time since 1999. Those thumps you heard on Thursday were our two jaws hitting the floor—it wasn’t Ake. It was yet another ‘ea, our fourth this summer and a new addition to our list. How is that possible? Like Ake, this ‘ea was tagged at Pohue on the Big Island. Will Sietz, who runs the tagging program at Pohue, wrote that she was the second hawksbill they’d tagged who was later reported foraging on Maui. The other one is Ake.

Now given their rarity, it’s no surprise that only two Pohue-tagged ‘ea have been reported on Maui. Think about the odds, however, that both of them would turn up at Honokowai at some point—during one of our dives! You do it, I can’t. It makes my head hurt.

Maui Ocean Center book signings

As I might have mentioned, Maui Ocean Center has invited us to help them celebrate It’s A Honu World, their week-long series of events that highlight the Hawaiian green turtle. I’ll be giving a slide presentation and talking about The Book of Honu tomorrow (Monday, August 25) at 3 PM at the Deep Reef Exhibit, followed by book-signing in the Retail Store. (It’s always free to visit the store!) On Thursday (August 28) I’ll be reading from The Book of Honu down by the Turtle Lagoon, again followed by book-signing in the Retail Store.

Which reminds me, I should be preparing…

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This might be short but it sure is late (August 10-16, 2008)

August 19th, 2008  

Dedication

For the remainder of this summer, these blogs are dedicated to the memory of Rick Dalton, brother-in-law but more important, friend. Aloha nui loa Rick.

Our book-signings at Maui Ocean Center

It’s a Honu World at Maui Ocean Center from August 23rd to the 29th. As part of the celebration, your hatchling authors (that’d be me and Ursula) have been invited to participate.

On Monday, August 25, at 3 PM, I’ll be giving a presentation at the Deep Reef Exhibit. It will feature pictures from The Book Of Honu, but I’ll also include some of the best pictures of this summer, as well as a few of the pictures that we had to leave out of the book due to space limitations. If we can make it work, we’ll also show a few video clips. Digital projectors can be finicky about video, so no promises. After the presentation, we’ll be signing books in the Gift Shop.

On Thursday, August 28 (my birthday!) I’ll be reading from The Book of Honu at the Turtle Lagoon Exhibit, also starting at 3 PM. Again, after the reading we’ll be in the Gift Shop to sign books.

Turtle Lagoon at Maui Ocean Center


A fascinated observer leaves noseprints on the glass at Maui Ocean Center’s Turtle Lagoon.


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Maui Ocean Center is the top attraction on the island, and the Turtle Lagoon is (in my humble opinion) the best exhibit in the aquarium. If you’re here on Maui, you owe it to yourself to visit—and by the way, it’s always free to visit the Gift Shop!

5690 makes it 7!

On Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, 5690 was back to make her seventh nest of the summer. Rather than duplicating Ursula’s fine effort for her blog, I’ll just point you over there.

We made several time exposures during the process, and we were really happy with some of them. I’ll just show off one here; visit Ursula’s blog for the rest.

Moon over 5690 making nest #7


A nearly full moon shines down on 5690 as she digs her seventh nest of 2008. You can just make out the top of her carapace in the shrubbery.


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Yet another ‘ea

The ‘ea, or Hawaiian hawksbills, are supposed to be rare. They are designated “endangered” under the Endangered Species Act. Since 1987, only 86 individual nesting females have been recorded, most of them making nests along the Ka’u coast of the Big Island.

Our dive site at Reef 2 is pretty small, really. It’s maybe 1500 square yards in total, and it’s quite a distance from the Ka’u coast. Yet so far this summer we’ve seen not one, not two, but three different ‘ea! We’ve mentioned Kiniana and Likeke, so when I spotted a hawksbill in the distance this week I assumed one of them was back. When we got closer, however, it was obvious that this was not an ‘ea we’d seen this summer. The turtle was too small to be Kiniana, and didn’t have the distinctive right flipper of Likeke. Further, this ‘ea had a lot more algae on the shell, way too much to have grown there recently.

We know Ake, another hawksbill we’ve seen in past years, now has tags, so that ruled her out. Could this be Keoki, the first hawksbill we’d ever met? We know that Keoki and Ake have both been sighted at Old Airport Beach, a popular snorkeling and beach diving site not far south of Honokowai. I was fairly sure that’s who we’d seen—until we got back to shore and I had a chance to check our database. No match! This was a new ‘ea, our third of the summer.

Previously unknown ‘ea with honu resting in the background.


This ‘ea (Hawaiian for hawksbill) was sighted on Reef 2, casually poking around in the corals for sponges. Note the honu resting in the background.


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There’s no doubt that ‘ea are really rare. How is it then that in the few hours we’ve spent underwater this summer, in the tiny area that our dives cover, we’ve been lucky enough to see three different hawksbills? Back to that lottery ticket debate

Good intentions

I’ve delayed posting this long enough. I was hoping to add more material here but circumstances have conspired against me. Your forgiveness is requested, Aloha!

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Big mysteries and little joys (August 3-9, 2008)

August 10th, 2008  

Dedication

For the remainder of this summer, these blogs are dedicated to the memory of Rick Dalton, brother-in-law but more important, friend. Aloha nui loa Rick.

Change is hard—and so is unchange

Before we get to this week’s events, I want to make a quick comment on Turtle Trax itself.

To create this blog, I use WordPress, which for the most part is a pleasure. Last week I discovered that the TinyMCE Advanced plugin really does tame the visual editor to the point where I might, for the first time ever, abandon hand-coded HTML. There are quirks, but I’m getting used to them. If you have your own blog, then you owe it to yourself to try this combination.

Anyone who’s read my early entries knows that I was ambitiously planning to revise the whole website to use CSS. (Can I just interject here that CSS suck?) The problem is that my long-cherished style for images employs drop-shadows.

CSS really sucks at doing drop-shadows of any sort, never mind the nice soft-edged ones I wanted. For a while I switched to a hard shadow, but I didn’t like it. Finally, this week I decided that HTML tables aren’t that wicked and if purists want to turn up their noses at the way I do things, fine. See if I care.

So I spent a good part of today drafting some macros to generate tables combined with a little CSS for my drop-shadow style images. They finally work, as you can see below. This is my style, and I’m sticking to it. Thanks to Matthijs Hollemans for Macro Expander. (Oh, and a special thanks to Internet expletive-deleted to Explorer for making my day more interesting.)

We return to Kuamo’o

Kuamo’o, our alternate dive site, is a fantastic dive, but it has its drawbacks. It’s both shallow and sandy, so the least bit of wave action makes it murky. Last week provided the first prolonged period without a swell, so we headed there for a long-overdue survey and to collect the temperature logger we placed last summer.

Even after a couple of days of quiet waters, the visibility was still mediocre– but pretty good for Kuamo’o. As expected, we immediately began sighting turtles. Kuamo’o must concentrate at least twice number of honu we see at Reef 2 into a noticeably smaller area. We were prepared for that, but one of the first things we saw we were definitely not prepared for: Wai?, the honubill, was settled peacefully into a hollow in the huge coral formation that dominates Kuamo’o.

Wai? at Kuamo’o


Wai?, nestled into the main reef of Kuamo’o, while a honu passes overhead and Ursula lurks in the background.


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Why Wai? is incredible

Here’s the thing. There is only one honubill that anyone knows about. In all of Hawaii, no one has ever reported another turtle like Wai?, ever. For us to discover her was like winning the lottery. We first sighted her at Kuamo’o in 2004. Then. much to astonishment, we saw her again in 2006 —at Reef 2! Incredible enough, but even more so that she’d show up at both sites in the same summer.

Now, Reef 2 is about 4.5 km (or 3 miles) from Kuamo’o. There are a lot of turtles between the two, most of them strangers we’ll never see. Yet Wai? shows up at the only two places where we dive regularly! What are the odds? Ursula and I have an ongoing debate about whether this means we should buy—or avoid—lottery tickets.

Kuamo’o tumors

The honu at Kuamo’o are still more likely to have tumors than those of the Honokowai ohana, although we know enough now that we don’t worry about many of them: they will recover on their own. The sad side of the story, which we continue to point out, is that the youngest turtles are also the ones most vulnerable. The disease is more severe, progresses more rapidly, and in almost every case in our experience—Kamaha’o is the only exception—results in the disappearance of the little honu. Dead? We can’t say for sure, but what would you think?

We haven’t seen many little honu at Honokowai this summer, but there are several at Kuamo’o. Sadly, they tend to have tumors.

Kuamo’o youngster with early FP


We made two dives at Kuamo’o. We saw this young honu on our second dive. The small tumors indicate the onset of FP, which means we probably won’t see this turtle next summer.


Click image to enlarge


2008 Roll Call

The summer  is well past the midway mark and we haven’t yet listed the honu we’ve seen from past summers. Mostly this is because the list is alarmingly short. There are a number of honu we recognize but not by name. That is, we’ve never given them names, and we haven’t done the work necessary to find out what numbers they have in our database. Further, finishing our book has taken up most of our resources in recent summers, so we haven’t updated the database. There are many honu we know have been around for more than one summer, but we can’t quantify how many or which ones.

When I say the list is short, I mean the list of our named turtles. Here it is:

Yes, I know 1996 Turtle 12 and 5690 aren’t names as such, but 5690 is a special case, and 1996 Turtle 12 is an old familiar face who we’ve never named for some reason. He rates a mention while some other numbered turtles don’t because he’s a favourite.

Where are the others? Well, we see a lot of daytime feeding inshore this summer, so we don’t expect to see as many honu out on the reef. We also know that food is not as plentiful as it once was in the area, so we think some of the old regulars have just moved up or down the coast a bit. Zeus (not seen this summer) is an example.

Zeus first went missing in 2003. Prior to that, we’d seen him frequently every summer since 1994, and we actually had a sighting of him reported  to us from 1992. He was missing all of 2004 as well, and we had given up hope of seeing him again. Then, on my birthday in 2005, there he was, swimming gracefully past.  We saw him again in 2006 and 2007, although once only in both summers. So we know Zeus is out there, he just isn’t hanging around within our diving range.

Wana is behaving much the same way. We’ve seen her, but she was at The Rock, where we seldom visit now. She’s drifting north and although we know she’s okay, we miss her. Others we worry about. Tutu has been missing since 2006. We thought she’d be migrating that year, so we weren’t alarmed, even though the folks who monitor the nesting activity at the French Frigate Shoals didn’t report seeing her. Then she was missing in 2007, and again she wasn’t seen at the FFS. She wasn’t there when we visited Maui in January, and she’s not out there this summer. Not good news.

Ho’oulu returns!

We’re not sure what to make of Ho’oulu. We didn’t seen her during our winter visit, and she wasn’t there in July either. Ho’oulu is fully adult, though, so there are three possibilities:

  1. She’s nesting somewhere other than East Island (FSS). There are more reports this summer of green turtles nesting on the main islands than ever before.  Ho’olulu is so huge we can’t believe she doesn’t nest somewhere, but she doesn’t have tags, she’s never had a number engraved on her shell, and she doesn’t have a PIT tag. I’d stake the house that she’s a nester, though.
  2. She’s off feeding when she used to spend time resting. She’s huge, Jerry. Huge! You don’t get that huge without a lot of food, and as I mentioned, food is scarce around here now. I suspect she has a lot to do with that. Did I mention she’s huge?
  3. She’s following the pattern of Zeus and Wana. She’s found a new place to stay, and she only comes back to Reef 2 occasionally.

Whatever the case might be, much to our delight we found her last week resting in exactly the same place she’s preferred since forever. As usual, she barely took notice of us so we both managed to get photos, one of which I now present for your viewing enjoyment:

Ho’oulu and Ursula, together again


After a prolonged absence, we sighted Ho’oulu in the same spot she’s used since 1992. She was her normal reserved self, and rested quietly for several portraits. Ursula is in the background snapping away.


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Hatchlings!

As I was trying to finish this blog yesterday, Ursula returned from Lahaina where she’d just checked 5690’s nest #3. She was excited because she thought she’d seen signs of impending hatchling emergence. So we hastily grabbed our cameras and rushed back to watch.

When we got there, it did indeed look like the hatchlings were about to make their appearance. The down side was that although there was a bright half-moon in the sky (good for attracting the hatchlings in the direction of the water) there was not enough light for photography. Using flash to photograph hatchlings is a strict no-no, so I resorted to long exposure times and hoped for the best. The results are pretty noisy/grainy, but all things considered they turned out fairly well.

Peter & Ursula waiting at nest #3


32 second exposure of us waiting for hatchlings. As you can see, Ursula is much better at staying still than I am.


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5690 nest #3


32 second exposure of hatchlings emerging—but the little kritters scoot too fast to show up! Who said turtles are slow?


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By the time it was over, we’d seen about 50 hatchlings scampering down the beach and into the waves. Despite the moon, it still dark enough to make it hard to be sure exactly how many there were. As far as we could tell, however, nobody got confused and headed the wrong way. It was a rare thrill, lone we won’t soon forget.

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Catching up (July 20-August 2)

August 3rd, 2008  

Dedication

For the remainder of this summer, these blogs are dedicated to the memory of Rick Dalton, brother-in-law but more important, friend. Aloha nui loa Rick.

Highlights resume

While I still think of Rick every day, the pain has subsided enough to start posting again. I have two weeks to catch up on, so I’ll just review some of the highlights.

Kiniana

On July 20, during our first dive in really clear water, we spotted a hawksbill resting peacefully on the reef. Hawksbills, or ‘ea in Hawaiian, are rare in Hawaii, so we always feel lucky when we see one. Rarer still is to see one resting–usually they are actively foraging or swimming across the reef. Rarest of all is to see one resting next to a honu. In our experience, honu and ‘ea don’t get along.

Kiniana and honu resting together


A rare turtle in an even rarer situation: lying around with a honu. This is Kiniana, first seen at Honokowai in 2000.


Click image to enlarge


Best of all, the ‘ea turned out to be one we know: Kiniana! We first met her in 2000, when she was a lot smaller. Now, she holds the record for the largest ‘ea we’ve seen. Because she is so large and still has a teeny tail, we’re fairly confident Kiniana is a female. She’s in excellent health as far as we can tell, and probably should be laying eggs somewhere this summer or next. They still use metal tags on nesting hawksbills, so it’s possible that she’ll turn up with jewelry sometime soon, maybe even this summer.

The new Mt. Balazs

If you’ve been following along, you know that for the past two summers we’ve seen a change in the habits of the Honokowai ohana. There’s been a substantial increase in daytime foraging, particularly right in front of our condo. We’ve speculated that this is why we aren’t seeing some of our old friends out on the reefs, and why others are now irregular in attendence.

Another possibility for absences, of course, is that the honu have moved. While they typically return to the same spot on the reef year after year, eventually some of them shift to a new preference. We like to think that turtles like Tutu are still around, just a bit up or down the coast and out of our diving range. We know this is true for Zeus, for example.

One of these new gathering places is actually not so new to us. It’s a large coral head that we used to pass regularly as we went back and forth to the Turtle House. It’s also closer to shore than the honu used to prefer, and until this summer, we’d never seen a honu near it.

Now, however, whenever we check it (it’s out of our normal dive plan these days) we find six or seven honu around and sometimes on it. Because it’s a large coral head away from the reef, it reminds me of Mt. Balazs, the coral head at North House that the honu eventually undermined to the point that it collapsed and literally disappeared. That isn’t likely to happen this time, since this coral head is much larger and the honu can’t wedge themselves under the edges as easily.

1996 Turtle 12 atop a coral head


1996 Turtle 12 sits atop the latest honu attraction at Honokowai.


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How long they’ll gather round it, however, is anyone’s guess. This one is within snorkeling range for the visitors and is shallow enough that people will inevitably dive down “to get a better look.” If you’re on of those visitors, please don’t do that. Wait patiently at a respectful distance, and sooner or later one of them will come up for air. Works much better.

Not exactly a highlight: Wai? is back

Wai? (yes, the question mark is part of the name) is the only known cross between a honu and a hawksbill. Last summer, we saw her (we think Wai? is probably female but no one knows for sure) and reported that we saw indications of the onset of FP. On our ninth dive, we saw her for the first time this summer. We were distressed to see that our prediction had been accurate: Wai? definitely has tumors.

While the tumors are not yet severe, and in fact the signs are that she has just a mild case that could already be in regression, there is still cause for alarm. Since Wai? is a crossbreed, she is potentially a vector for a species jump. FP has never been reported in the Hawaiian hawksbill. Nobody knows how FP spreads, so we worry that Wai? could somehow transmit the disease to the ‘ea. We think the chances of that are small indeed, but they definitely aren’t zero.

Likeke

We’ve noted that the ‘ea are rare, and they are. Reports say that there are only about 100 nesting hawksbills in the Hawaiian Islands, and they are listed as critically endangered. On the other hand, we spotted our second hawksbill of the summer on July 25th, swimming directly towards us. Completely unconcerned about our presence, the turtle swam right between us and proceeded to a patch of coral a short distance away, where a “tastie” was apparently concealed. In short order, pieces of coral littered the bottom as the ‘ea engaged in a search for food.

Likeke swims between us


Likeke charged up the middle between us, providing an excellent photo op.


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The behaviour indicates that this turtle is no stranger to divers, so we suspect that hher range includes Old Airport Beach, a popular snorkeling and diving site just south of Honokowai. We’ve actually met this ‘ea before, and in fact one of the pictures in our book shows a honu snapping at hier–a rare turn of events, since it is usually the ‘ea who snap at the honu.

We didn’t name this hawksbill last summer –we usually wait for inspiration, some signal –or perhaps even the turtle to “suggest” a name. We went to the Hawaiian Boys’ Names dictionary and chose Likeke, which is Hawaiian for Richard, Rick and Ricky. I don’t think I have to explain why.

5690 makes nest #6

On the night of July 28, 5690 made three false crawls, but no nest. We therefore expected her to nest on the night of the 29th, so we got to the beach early–or so we thought. It was only 8:30 but when we arrived 5690 was already crawling up. She’d just gotten past the high tide line when I spotted her. She started some tentative digging in short order, and we thought, “Cool, early bedtime!” Silly us.

She dug for a while, then decided she didn’t like that spot so she moved further mauka and started over. We thought this was good, since the first choice had been a little too close to the high water line for our liking. It added 45 minutes to our night, but so what. Still looked like an early finish to us.

She spent almost an hour flapping about and digging a fair-sized pit–and then she started to crawl makai! Visions of another false crawl flashed though our heads but no, she stopped midway between her first effort and her second and started anew. Hopes for a quick nest faded as she dug industriously for another hour or so. Still, we were grateful that she hadn’t headed back into the water, and we could see from her movements that she was working hard on her egg chamber.

Eventually she stopped for a couple of minutes, which normally means that she’s starting to drop her eggs. This time it was clear something was wrong. Normally, when she’s laying she drops her head, but we could see that she had her head raised and was looking around. Oh no!

Oh yes. She started to move again, this time back to the pit she’d dug mauka. At least she was still determined to finish her nest, but now we could see it would be a loooong night. By this time she was digging in just about the darkest spot on the beach, and to make it even harder to see what she was doing, she was burrowing in vegetation that covered most of her shell. I had a brief hope that she’d get to digging the egg chamber quickly because she’d already dug a large body pit there, but no such luck. It was start-all-over for 5690.

At last, at about 12:45, she settled down and this time, her head drooped in concentration. After a couple of minutes, I slipped up behind her to make sure she was actually laying eggs. She was. Huge sighs of relief from us.

Waiting for 5690 to get on with it


Things to do while you wait for 5690 to finish: make a 15 second time exposure. That’s Ursula sneaking a few winks under the Mississauga flag.


Click image to enlarge


5690 finally swam away at almost exactly 3:00 AM, having covered up a much larger hole than usual in a much shorter time than she typically takes. Thankful for small mercies, we roped off the nesting area and made it home at 4 in the morning. Tiring, but as always, a thrill and an experience I wouldn’t want to miss. Will she return for number 7 in two weeks? I sure hope so, because whether she does or not, we’ll be walking the beach to find out.

Ho’omalu

We’ve taken the kayak up to Hoaka a couple of times, but with mixed success. The first time, the wind came up and the water was already murky. I jumped in the water and immediately saw Ho’omalu, our Hawaiian-Mexican crossbreed. She was swimming gracefully away, however, and I never got a chance to get a picture. Our second visit had much better conditions, but no Ho’omalu.

We haven’t given up hope of getting a photo. She looked fine in the brief glimpse I got. We’ve always worried that she might contract FP but I saw no obvious tumors. Of course, I didn’t have a chance to see if there were the subtle signs we recognize as the onset of the disease. Stiil, we know that she’s out there and she still has all her body parts. That’s something.

In conclusion

The ocean calls, so I’m cutting this off. Other things worthy of mention have happened, but they’ll have to wait. Aloha!

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