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Discussion in 'Environment' started by Battfisher, Jan 6, 2018.
beer stayed cold.
took 20lbs of ice ... came back with 40lbs
A friend of mine told me there were lots of dead snook and tarpon just north of Daytona, I have not heard of any dead fish down here around Charlotte Harbor. A commercial fisherman I know was cast netting sand brim in canals off Charlotte Harbor and he told me the canals are so full of legthargic snook that he could not even fish in the canals. I think if we had one more night of really cold weather it would have killed some snook.
I was out on the water today (central east side of Tampa Bay) and did not see a single dead fish.
Item one... Please don't confuse cold water fish kills with all the other problems fish face (red tides, hot water "too little oxygen", or sudden vast amounts of freshwater, etc..). Cold water fish kills are bad enough. I usually expect, and am rarely disappointed, to see cold water fish kills every seven to ten years in my area (the Everglades - much to the south of central florida where cold kills are more frequent...).
Item two... Snook and other cold sensitive species (like bonefish, permit, and tarpon) are at the extreme northern end of their range here in Florida. Central Florida is really in that situation (mild years will see snook range farther to the north - cold kills will cut their range back severely..).
Item three.. Yes, I've seen cold stunned snook drifting helplessly down towards Whitewater Bay early in the morning on very cold days (in the creeks and rivers that drain from the east, northeast (Watson, North, Roberts rivers, etc.) down into Whitewater. I've also seen those same fish turn over and swim away when they come into areas with a bit warmer waters (and in my area, on a bright sunny day after a cold night - water temps might rise as much as five degrees from dawn to around 2pm in places sheltered from the wind..).
This last cold snap doesn't seem to have caused any cold kills in my area (or at least I haven't heard of any) and since I've been either cancelling or putting off charters until it warms up a bit (like today...) it will be a few days before I'm back out on the water. One thing is sure though... if fish are caught in very shallow waters with no deep water nearby - they're very vulnerable to coldkills. Thank heavens the interior of the Everglades has so many rivers and creeks with areas of eight feet to much deeper waters for them to shelter in until waters warm up...
While northeast Florida is certainly the northern end of the range for snook, it is definitely within their "range." I went out in the Jacksonville area Saturday morning and saw hundreds of dead fish - mostly mullet and catfish - but several snook to about 8 pounds and several tarpon to about 20 pounds. And, trust me, they were all dead, not just cold stunned. It sucks because the week before the cold snap, I was catching those snook, and catching them pretty good. What I want to know is if ANY managed to survive.
Hopefully enough don't die that they close the season again on a positive we have iguana's falling out of the trees right now and maybe it'll effect the pythons in the Everglades.
The amount of dead (and/or stunned?) bait floating in the ICW in the Edgewater/New Smyrna area is pretty alarming -- at least to me, a newcomer who hasn't seen anything like it before. All weekend, there were clouds of birds (gulls, terns, pelicans, skimmers) just gorging themselves up and down the river.
This is what I'm hoping for.
Gonna launch out of Cockroach Bay tomorrow if the weather is okay
Had a few snook south of Jax I have been hearing about as well....
Im sure this freeze on the other hand is great for helping to clean up the lagoon and IRL for now...
Anyone fished it lately with any success on reds/trout at least?
I plan on making a trip down soon.
I fished Banana River on Friday started out around 12:00 sun was out water temps were 49. Polled some flats had water up to 53 didn't see any reds or trout some mullet. Moved to some deep water canals water was 58 managed one red. Didn't see any dead fish but water was brown like the nasty end of summer algae brown. Could have been from all the wind and rain we had recently.
The deep water rivers and creeks in the Everglades are just one of the many features of the Glades that make it one of America's best natural resources.
Time will tell....I know we all have our fingers crossed.
There was a pretty substantial amount of dead fish in lower Tampa Bay. Most of what I have seen was specific to the shallows way back in the mangroves. The combination of cold weather, negative lows and the extreme north blow made these areas deadly real fast. (extreme low water) The last few days the changing tides are revealing more and more carnage. Not too hard to find with the clouds of vultures and other birds.
Overall not like 2010 but pretty bad. Lots of variety to the dead fish, including snook and tarpon.
Cancelled all of my trips for the last week. Plan on getting back on the water later this week to see what's happening.
Fished on Sunday in the ENP. Not only did we not see any dead snook, we caught between 25-30 including 3 or 4 over slot fish. They were all very shiny, silvery colored, not like some of the tanin-stained, darker snook we often catch in the park. All were fat and healthy and carefully and quickly released.
The canal in my back yard here in Edgewater is full of snook and baby tarpon. Only one tarpon has died so far and no snook. Several of the snook have marks on them that look like frost burn though. There are some dead look downs in the water. There is a jack swimming right next to one of the larger tarpon and won't leave its side. I don't know if it is getting warmth from the tarpon or is staying close for some other reason. I don't want to try to catch any of the snook or tarpon because I don't think they need the added stress while they are already fighting for their lives. I'm hoping this warming trend over the next few days will save them.
At the end of my street, one of the two houses that is directly on the river has a long dock that goes out into the river. It was covered up with dozens of American egrets and great blue herons today. There were also lots of gulls and terns diving on dead and dying fish around his dock.
The only dead fish we saw in the extreme northern part of the bay (on Sunday) were catfish.