Three elegant terns and a couple of western gulls take a little rest in the middle of the Santa Barbara Channel on a drifting giant kelp paddy.
Macrocystis pyrifera detached paddy & Larus occidentalis & Sterna elegans 2016 06-04 SB Channel-009
Heermann's gulls and a few juveniles of other species rest on a drifting giant kelp (Macrocystis) paddy in the middle of the Santa Barbara Channel. Plastic debris is also seen in this photo.
Larus heermanni on Macrocystis detached paddy 2016 01-17 SB Channel-009
One of seven images in a row showing a humpback whale rising up from the depths to do a bit of kelping. Kelping refers to an animal intentionally "playing" with Macrocystis, Pelagophycus, Nereocystis or other kelp species that are detached and drifting on the surface. Humpbacks are thought to have very sensitive skin and seem to "enjoy" this experience.
Megaptera novaeangliae KELPING CLOSE Macrocystis paddy 2015 11-13 SB Channel - 004