Monday, August 29, 2016

August, 3. Around the Koni Peninsula

August, 3. Around the Koni Peninsula

The weather window we had, according to the forecast, was roughly 2 and a half days. We opted to go around the Koni Peninsula. We rarely visit this part of the peninsula because it is exposed to the Sea of Okhotsk proper and is subject to violent storms. Even in calm weather the swell prevents landing, and, in addition, the coastline lacks any bays or inlets where you can hide. Even beaches are absent along the majority of the coastline.

The plan was to use the reserve's boat, and combine the patrol trip with the eagle surveys. Equipped with a 90hp outboard, it is fast enough to get out of the exposed shore relatively quickly.

The stretch between the Ploskiy Cape, where the ranger's station was, and the Taran Cape with the lighthouse had 2 nests with chicks (two and one chicks) and one new occupied territory. The surprise was the low numbers of bears. We saw only 4, whereas the usual number would be 10-12.

Here is the bear which tolerated us.

The view of the Koni Penninsula from the South is stunning. Curtains of fog and combination of bright sun and dark underclouds made for an absolutely spectacular view.

The Taran Cape with its lighthouse greeted us with a nice view.

Immediately behind the Taran Cape we saw first possible poachers. Unfortunately they did not have their fishing lines in the water, so we advised them to keep 2 km away from the shoreline. They obeyed.

We saw at least three other boats, but they were well within the legal limits in terms of the distance from the shoreline.

Meanwhile we were heading towards a wall of fog....

Will we manage to continue the survey....???

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