Monday, June 21, 2010

In search of the Northern Gannet

The markings and colors on the head of the Northern Gannet are beautiful.
Gannets swimming alongside Roche Percé near the Gaspé Peninsula town of Percé.
Just past the rock, the sky begins to fill with gannets.
Soon they're everywhere, except close enough to the boat to be photographed.
Smaller birds, black and white murres, share the rocks of Bonaventure Island with the gannets. Below, my favorite gannet picture is this shot I got of one "running" across the water to take off. I wish I'd been able to take a photo of a murre skipping across the water prior to taking off. TOO cute.

Because I'd so enjoyed "meeting" red-footed and blue-footed boobies in the Galapagos Islands, I decided my Great Canadian Adventure should include Bonaventure Island, where thousands of the boobies' cousins, the Northern Gannets, nest every year. The island is located off the Gaspé Peninsula in eastern Quebec, near the famous "pierced rock" or "Roche Percé" which is included in the boat tour from the town of Percé. I saw hundreds, maybe thousands, of Northern Gannets, but none up close. Unlike their Galapagos relatives, they want nothing to do with humanity. (Knowing what I know about humanity, I suspect they might often be right.) I had to find a public-domain photo online (top picture) to show you why I was so eager to see these beautiful birds.

1 comment:

KaHolly said...

I NEED to go there!