Monday, May 3, 2010

Black Skimmer

On a recent incidental walk down to the estuary near the station, volunteers Ruth and Heather spotted some very out of the ordinary birds. They called over Bird project co-manager Andres who identified them as Black Skimmers (Rynchops niger). These unique birds get their name from their long lower beaks, which allow them to skim the surface of the water for food. “Their range is only on the Pacific,” reported Andres, “so this sighting is very rare.” The skimmers stayed with us for a few days, long enough for everyone to see them for themselves, and for photos to be taken to be sent off for official identification.