Thursday, August 5

why i want to be an oyster catcher

oyster catchers are a striking seabird i just love watching. they are solid black, with a glorious lonnngg orange beak, and they play a great cat and mouse game to keep you away from their nests, which they tend to create right smack on the beach, just out of reach of the tide line.

so, how easy is housekeeping for an oyster catcher?? check it out - let's just scatter some broken shells and lay our eggs! jeekers! no twigs, no fluffy stuff. obviously there is no pampering for baby oyster catchers. looks like they have to break the shell and hit the beach running! i'm going to point this out to my children the next time they think they have life rough.

i found this nest a couple weeks ago when we took the skiff over to long island, just a quick 20 minute ride from town. it's taken us 8 years to talk my mom into going on the boat with us, but we finally did it:

she just turned 83. she had a blast on the ride, but made me promise not to post any of those photos because her hair was messy. it was a beautiful day, the kind that reminds you why you love living on an island in alaska.

my pal duffy loves to be the navigator. he frequently dives in and swims along. we let him go until we see the sea lions snort, then yard him back in.
we were babysitting duff's sister snickers for a week, she also loves a good boat ride. gotta love her coast guard approved life jacket!

see what i mean? the perfect place to live.

and every morning when i wake up i say a thank you prayer that i no longer have to stand on the back deck of a seiner, piling corks and getting slapped in the face with jellyfish. you should too. you should also be sure to find out if the salmon you are eating is wild alaskan salmon, because if it is farmed fish, it is taking away the livelihood of fishermen and their families like the folks in the picture above.
with that soap box moment, i will say my goodbyes, as i am leaving tomorrow for ugak bay. i can't wait to get back to the lodge, meet new folks, and cook! having all that fresh seafood to work with is incredible. i sure wish chef ramsey would drop in for a visit, so i could wow him with my fresh crab cakes - ha ha. if he ever did show up in my kitchen i would be cowering in the corner...

at any rate, there is no internet at the bay, so i'll be snapping photos like mad to share with you when i return in early october! all of you take good care! and if you are in one of those places that is sweltering in temperatures i can't even imagine...this photo is for you. it's my front yard at ugak bay. just visualize yourself there for a quick cool down.


  1. Wow I so wish someday to go help you cook Deb..:) I will miss your posts and stories and will wait anxiously for you to return and fill us in on all the new adventures! Sadly for some reason I can't see the picture of your place in Ugak or Duffy and Snickers, I don't know why Blogger does that sometimes but I will only get every other picture! If you could email them I would love to see them! Take care Deb and have a wonderful time this summer. See you this Autumn!
    Your blog friend
    Tina xo

  2. Wait, you're gonna be gone until October???
    Wow, stay safe and have fun!


  3. October???? that's waaaay too long before we hear from you! Well, I'm imagining you will have a great time, bugs, bears and all!
    Your pictures are gorgeous, this is why people run to Alaska...the only salmon I have ever, ever liked was caught fresh. It was wonderful.
    congrats to your mom for getting on your boat!! She is gorgeous as well!!!

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  5. Love Love Love everything about this post dear Deb.
    Your Mom is darling and the blues in your home space are breath taking.

    Farm raised fish is full of antibiotics and other junk too...thanks for reminding everyone

    will miss you ... October seems so far off ... but you are worth waiting for
    Peace and Enjoy Enjoy which I'm sure you are at this very moment!


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