Birds of Rocky Point

JayT

Active Member
Forum Supporter
Rocky Point is a such a great place for bird watchers. The desert-meets-ocean geography brings an interesting variety. I'm throwing out a few of my favorites I see in Rocky Point and what I like about them.

1. Osprey - I love watching them pluck big fish out of the ocean and returning with the fish hoisted underneath pointed ahead.
2. Brown Pelican - Squadrons flying above the beach and skimming the ocean in long single file.
3. Frigatebirds - Soaring high in the sky over the ocean like black pterodactyls with huge wings and forked tails.
4. Least Terns - Fluttering in place over the ocean then diving for small fish.
5. American Oystercatchers - Tuxedo birds with bright red eyes and beaks foraging around the tide pools and screaming loudly when they fly away.
6. Egrets and Herons - Creeping around the tide pools stalking unsuspecting fish.
7. Cactus Wren - Their call is THE best sound of the desert.
8. Turkey Vulture - Love seeing them soar along the beach looking for treats washed up along the high tide line.
9. Grackles - Their loud morning cackling is usually one of the first sounds I hear in the morning.
10. Blue-footed Booby - Flying over the ocean and plunge diving for fish.
 

Southbeacher

Well Known Member
Yea -- we refer to those "Brown Pelican Squadrons" as Klingon War Ships (which old Star Trek fans might appreciate).
 

audsley

Well Known Member
I wish you had included pictures. I know that's asking a lot, but I've tried to identify the birds I see in Puerto Lobos 95 miles south and I'm never certain on some of them. Frigatebirds, least terns, American oystercatchers and blue-footed boobies - I'm probably seeing them but can't put a name to them. The rest are easy. And I notice that the Sea of Cortez vulture looks a little different from the ones we have in Arizona.
 

Southbeacher

Well Known Member
The wings of Frigatebirds in flight appear prehistoric -- like small versions of dinosaur birds.
 
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Stuart

Aye carumba!!!
Staff member
Frigates are the fisherman's friend. While trolling for big game in a seemingly empty ocean, follow the frigates soaring high above. They will often follow a school of dorado, tuna or a solitary marlin for miles, waiting for them to feed. When you see the frigates dive from high above, there's something feeding and the frigates want in on the action. That single technique has caught some nice fish for me over the years.

Pics coming back into Mazatlán. The Mexican fishermen always reward their friends with the leftover bait. The frigates will come down on the back of the boat and take a fish right out of your hand.

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Boobies on the other hand, tend to be dumb as a box of rocks. We like trolling deep diver Rapalas closer to shore and on more than one occasion we've had a booby dive on a lure and get hooked. Stop the boat, reel in a screaming pissed off bird that wants to peck your eyes out, grab him by the neck to subdue him, carefully remove the hook and let him go on his merry way. While always a royal PITA when this happens, you know it's a good thing. If your lures are running well enough to fool a bird from above, they're going to fool the fish, too.
 
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rplarry

Well Known Member
Frigates are the fisherman's friend. While trolling for big game in a seemingly empty ocean, follow the frigates soaring high above. They will often follow a school of dorado, tuna or a solitary marlin for miles, waiting for them to feed. When you see the frigates dive from high above, there's something feeding and the frigates want in on the action. That single technique has caught some nice fish for me over the years.

Pics coming back into Mazatlán. The Mexican fishermen always reward their friends with the leftover bait. The frigates will come down on the back of the boat and take a fish right out of your hand.

View attachment 17225View attachment 17226View attachment 17227

Boobies on the other hand, tend to be dumb as a box of rocks. We like trolling deep diver Rapalas closer to shore and on more than one occasion we've had a booby dive on a lure and get hooked. Stop the boat, reel in a screaming pissed off bird that wants to peck your eyes out, grab him by the neck to subdue him, carefully remove the hook and let him go on his merry way. While always a royal PITA when this happens, you know it's a good thing. If your lures are running well enough to fool a bird from above, they're going to fool the fish, too.
Great explanation and story Stuart.

So, sounds like the moral to the end of your story is that your are hoping for a fish that is dumber than a Boobie ?

.
 

Stuart

Aye carumba!!!
Staff member
Great explanation and story Stuart.

So, sounds like the moral to the end of your story is that your are hoping for a fish that is dumber than a Boobie ?

.
Kinda sorta, but you have to see things from the booby's perspective. Nearly all birds have an eye on each side of their head. This why you see them cock their heads from side-to-side as they analyze what they are seeing.

Boobies are unique in that they have two eyes looking directly forward, similar to an owl. The old saying of "crazy as a cross-eyed booby" has merit. This gives them the appearance of being cross-eyed when seen head on. This "silly" appearance, as well as their strange mating dance, led the Spaniards to call them bobos (clowns), hence the name boobie. While their appearance may be silly, they are spectacular and daring hunters and as said, have no qualms diving 20 ft. under the water to take a fishing lure.
 

rplarry

Well Known Member
Kinda sorta, but you have to see things from the booby's perspective. Nearly all birds have an eye on each side of their head. This why you see them cock their heads from side-to-side as they analyze what they are seeing.

Boobies are unique in that they have two eyes looking directly forward, similar to an owl. The old saying of "crazy as a cross-eyed booby" has merit. This gives them the appearance of being cross-eyed when seen head on. This "silly" appearance, as well as their strange mating dance, led the Spaniards to call them bobos (clowns), hence the name boobie. While their appearance may be silly, they are spectacular and daring hunters and as said, have no qualms diving 20 ft. under the water to take a fishing lure.
Very interesting and makes sense.

I have watched boobies dive and you are absolutely correct, they do it with power and reckless abandon
 
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