Forthcoming Pelagic trips in Chile
Seabirds such as albatrosses, petrels and shearwaters are species with a unique biology. In their wanderings through the seas of the world they only touch firm ground for nesting. So to see them close up it is necessary to go sailing on offshore pelagic trips to try and find them.
Chile has more than 4,000 kilometers of coastline and is considered as one of the best places in the world to do pelagic trips. Even our knowledge of this interesting group of birds is very limited so there is much to discover and learn.
It will last for around 6 hours, watching birds and marine mammals on the Humboldt current. The dates of the next trips are shown below.
The current mentioned above was named after its discoverer, the German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt and consists of a stream of cold water emerging from the seabed off the coast of central Chile and moves northward dragging nutrients even as far up as Ecuador, creating one of the world's richest marine ecosystems.
This huge rise of nutrients notably favors the observation of marine fauna. There have been observed in trips like these about 60 species of seabirds. Including several species of albatrosses, petrels, shearwaters, terns, diving-petrels, cormorants, gulls and terns. These include the giant Wandering albatross and Chatham albatrosses, both of which are deemed vulnerable (BirdLife 2016).
The species that can be spotted vary depending on the time of year and where you sail but some of the most common species off the coast of Valparaiso are: Black-browed Albatross, Salvin´s and Royal albatross, Northern Giant-Petrel, Mottled (Cape) ,Juan Fernandez ,White-Chinned and Westland Petrels, shearwater, Sooty and Pink-Footed Shearwater, Peruvian Diving Petrel, Inca Tern, Wilson´s Storm-Petrel, Humboldt penguin, Magellanic penguins, Peruvian Booby, Guanay Cormorant and Peruvian Pelican and other interesting species.
Starting from July 2016 we have begun a series of pelagic trips that will continue to happen on every second Saturday of each month. With this, we hope to expand our knowledge of this interesting group of birds.
Thank you for taking part!
Murphy said “I now belong to the higher cult of mortals for I have seen the albatross!”
If you want to belong to this cult, and enjoy one of the best pelagic experiences in the world, then you have to go on a pelagic trip on the Humboldt Current!
PRICE PER PERSON: US$150
We will meet at the pier Muelle Prat, near Plaza Sotomayor (see map below) Valparaíso. The departure schedule is set for 6:30 am returning to port around 12:30 pm, depending on weather conditions. You are asked to be punctual in order to avoid delaying the departure and out of respect for the other participants (We do not wait for latecomers). For different locations we will give specific indications.
If weather conditions are bad (rain, too much fog, tidal waves or strong winds) the master of the vessel may decide it is unsafe to sail and the trip can be postponed to the next day (Sunday) if the forecast shows that the conditions are likely to improve.
If the forecast shows that the conditions will not improve, the trip will be held the following weekend.
Notwithstanding this the participants have the option to request a full refund of their money up to two days before the revised date set for departure.
If we know in advance of weather problems participants will be notified the day before departure before 18:00 hrs by e-mail.
Weather conditions can be very changeable at sea. If the day is clear, the sun is quite strong so the use of wide-brimmed hats and sunscream are recommended.
Remember though that if there is wind before the sun comes up, it can be cold.
Waterproof jacket and pants are ideal to have with you as they keep out the wind and keep you dry if some water splashes onto the boat.
What to bring
Do not forget to bring your binoculars. Use of these may present some difficulty in an environment that is constantly moving but you will find them invaluable.
If you are a photographer, this trip is a very good opportunity to take amazing pictures of birds.
The lens should not exceed 400 mm, because it is difficult to be stable on the boat and birds usually are close enough to the boat for a below 400mm lens to work well.
It is recommended to shoot at speed higher than 1/1000 to get shots that are as clear as possible.
Remember that we are in offshore conditions and sometimes some water can splash back into the boat, so you should be careful with your optical equipment.
On the boat
The boat is open, with seating for all, a cabin where you can leave backpacks and luggage and a small bathroom (basic).
It has life jackets for each participant and it is MANDATORY TO USE THEM for your own personal safety. The boat also has an additional lifeboat.
We will have two drums with bait (chum) to attract birds near the boat along with fish oil to get the birds closer to facilitate better observations.
There is always the possibility of getting dizzy even if you are an experienced seaman.
Many people are susceptible to motion sickness and here are some simple tips you can use to reduce or prevent motion sickness:
-Be rested and sleep well the night before.
-Do not drink alcohol the night before departure
-Try to eat light meals the night before and only have a light breakfast on the day you travel.
-There are different medications on the market such as Dramamine and Mareamin that can help prevent motion sickness. If you plan to use these it is recommended to consult a doctor for dosages and possible side effects (drowsiness etc )
If you do suffer from dizziness/sickness on the boat it normally works to relieve this if you simply lie down for a while.
Enjoy the trip!
MAP OF MEETING PLACE IN VALPARAISO-DOWNLOAD JPG
January 20th, 2018 (VALPARAISO)
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