Just watched the local channel 9 news and was surprised to see the story on the lack of Seaway fish and that the ones that are there are unhealthy. They said that divers say the fish are very lethargic and that they can easily pick up eels and they shouldn’t be able to.
Craig or anyone else, have you noticed any difference in fish numbers and behaviour lately?
Seaworld are pathology testing some fresh dead eels provided by the divers and the results back show that they have inflammation in both the spleen and kidney but they don’t know what is causing it. Said it could possibly be dredging or pile driving, anyone heard anything or noticed any change?
If a little dredging can cause a problem, what will happen if they build a cruise ship terminal?
All I can say is that the fishing has been pretty good lately, there are plenty of bait fish around and any we caught seemed fiesty and normal.
Im not sure about the seaway but around 10 years ago in the Coomera river where the fresh and salt water meet, there used to be swarms of herring, jacks, mullet, bream, tailor and to many other fish to list. Most afternoons after school and on the weekends my dad and i used to fish there. You would get dozens of fish in as many minutes until a concrete plant was built upstream.
Within a few months there was hardly any fish in the area and i beleive something from the plant was to blame .
Probably right Jayde, back then they took every short cut they could, another problem with the Coomera River is all the waterfront developments destroying their habitat and hideholes. It hasn’t recovered either.
I just wouldn’t like to see the same thing happen in the Seaway.
The last two weeks has seen a change in fish behaviour, they are less active and spend less time feeding and more time sulking on the bottom. There is also less fish around in general. The reason for this in my opinion is twofold, the drop in water temperature and the clarity of the water on the run in tide. The water temperature has dropped to 18 degrees from the steady 21 degrees we have had over the last couple of months. The water clarity on the run in tides is now around 10 metres which is insane, you can see the bottom around the end of the north wall and on the edge of the canyon, fish in the seaway do not like this at all and will head up the rivers or out to sea in order to find some cover. I know for a fact that most of the tailor have headed further up the broadwater between Crab and Couran Cove so they can hunt in the dirtier water. Most of the bigeyes headed upstream a couple of weeks ago. The GT’s are still around but their behaviour is increasingly erratic.
This is a typical winter weather pattern, westerlies and calm seas means clear water and fussy fish, you are better off fishing around the bottom of the runout tide start of the run in tide or at night when this happens. What we need is a sustained strong SE weather event to add turbidity to the water again, but there is nothing like that in the forecasts.
As much as I’d like to blame the dredging for it, there simply hasn’t been enough dredging to make a difference, if there was the water would be dirty all the time and you wouldn’t be able to see 1 metre down let alone the 10 metres plus we have at the moment.
As for the eels not sure what is happening there, but I have not caught any fish with open sores that weren’t caused by sharks.
Great in depth comment and explanation as usual Craig.
They were talking about the eels and the fish and for the Seaworld vet to become involved, I thought there may be something to it. The guy doing the talking has been diving the seaway for 7 years and said he has never seen anything like it but maybe he is not in the water as often as you are on it and just hasn’t noticed the change before at this time of year.
Any fish we have caught look healthy enough but they have been scarcer and you explanation goes a long way towards explaining why that is the case.
Here’s the link to that news bit. While I don’t like to point out issues with what may be a serious problem, the whole bit was unconvincing. With the water clarity at the moment, some dodgy up close video of leatherjackets and black spinefoot(neither of which are likely to shy away from divers) in poor water conditions was the best they could come up with? I could send my gopro down and get better footage than that.
Most of the members who are out fishing regularly are seeing massive schools of incredibly healthy fish. Some of the trevally that are being caught are fat, very fat.
Also the fact that the top end predators (gt’s, Kingies ect) are still around is a fairly good indication that the ecosystem is anything but unhealthy. Would love to take the news crew out on the tinny to show them how healthy our ecosystem is.
I just watched the story from the link Craig posted…what a joke! Seems like a news piece based on hidden agendas rather than real facts. If there’s something wrong with the eco system then Im all for maintaining a healthy balance but that story was pretty unconvincing.
Forget SeaWorld…I reckon the NBN News should go out for a trip with Craig and get some real facts haha