[Coral-List] Piney Point Fish Count Reports-Suspected Source of Problem Found-Red Tide
reefball at reefball.com
Sun Aug 17 09:29:35 EDT 2003
Hi Billy, Hu, Greg, Richard, (And the many others who have helped with
In fact, Red Tide was one of our first suspicions but a lack of data from
Manatee County left us unable to draw initial conclusions. Therefore we
contacted Mote Marine in neighboring Sarasota County and Richard H. Pierce,
Ph.D. of Mote Marine was able to confirm the following:
"Our staff did a short survey to 2 miles out of New Pass earlier
this week where they found very high concentrations of red tide. The levels
in the Bay have diminished after the storm, due to freshwater influx, but
there does appear to be patches of red tide in high concentrations
remaining just off shore."
That survey was within 15 miles of our site so we believe we have found "the
We suspect that there was no red tide during our actual measurements (due to
the fact that I am slightly allergic to Red Tide and I did not experience
any nasal discomfort or coughing) so our "best guess" is that one of the
patches of red tide moved over the artificial reef area at some point prior
to the fish counts. (This may also be a factor in the low dissolved oxygen
levels we found on the site at the time of the survey).
>From the Satellite images, I believe we can also rule out the Piney Point
dumping as an aggravating factor in the red tide in this area. (The red
tide was present at some levels before the dumping and we don't see any
direct chlorophyll plumes from the dumping site to the area we surveyed).
In regards to Chuanmin Hu 's comments
"It must be rainfall caused runoff - at Todd's location color is much darker
than usual (the dark band, parallel to the coast, is about 40 km wide), and
SeaWiFS "chlorophyll" is > 16 mg/m^3 (normally it is less than 2 mg/m^3). Of
course SeaWiFS "chlorophyll" has a lot of uncertainties in this region (most
of the signal may be due to dissolved matter for this runoff), but this high
contrast explains a lot."
There was certainly some very high rainfall events prior to our monitoring.
Our 12 ft secci disk readings were also low for the area. Therefore, this
condition was possibly as compounding factor. However, since we have had
similar conditions in the past which (at least statistically) did not seem
to affect our fish counts in a remarkable way we believe that the best
explanation is still Red Tide.
Thanks again to everyone in helping us zero in on the probable of the
unusual fish counts from our survey.
Chairman, Reef Ball Foundation, Inc.
President, Reef Ball Development Group, Ltd.
6916 22nd Street West
Bradenton, FL 34207
941-720-7549 (Cell when traveling)
reefball at reefball.com
----- Original Message -----
From: "Billy Causey" <Billy.Causey at noaa.gov>
To: <reefball at reefball.com>
Cc: "Multiple recipients of list BLACKWATER"
<blackwater at seas.marine.usf.edu>
Sent: Saturday, August 16, 2003 11:20 PM
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Piney Point Fish Count Reports
> Didn't a "Red Tide" occur in that area during the timeframe you described?
> Todd Barber wrote:
> > The Reef Ball Foundation has been, over the last two years, conducting
> > count surveys over artificial reefs in Manatee County. On Wed of this
> > we got in our fish counts from our "offshore" reefs which are 7 miles of
> > coast of Manatee County. Although one would hope that the Piney Point
> > dumping was too far away to cause an effect, we had a very striking loss
> > fish....specifically speaking, our Fall monitorings have always reported
> > huge schools of baitfish (herring, etc) around the reefs and they were
> > completely absent. All fish count population were significantly down or
> > absent.
> > Not to point the finger at Piney Point....there has also been some Red
> > activity and higher than normal rainfall activities as well as reported
> > sewage overflows due to the rain in the county (any one of which or a
> > combination of which could be to blame). As another note, we also
> > the lowest D.O. levels offshore since we began surveying at 3.0 (we
> > average between 4-6) I just wanted to let folks know that something is
> > causing an unusual disturbance offshore in terms of fishery behavior.
> > Thanks,
> > Todd Barber
> > Chairman, Reef Ball Foundation, Inc.
> > President, Reef Ball Development Group, Ltd.
> > 6916 22nd Street West
> > Bradenton, FL 34207
> > 941-752-0169 (Office)
> > 941-752-1033 (Fax)
> > 941-752-0338 (Personal)
> > 941-720-7549 (Cell when traveling)
> > reefball at reefball.com
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "Brian Keller" <Brian.Keller at noaa.gov>
> > To: "Chuanmin Hu" <hu at seas.marine.usf.edu>
> > Cc: <coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>; "Multiple recipients of list
> > BLACKWATER" <blackwater at seas.marine.usf.edu>
> > Sent: Thursday, August 14, 2003 5:14 PM
> > Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Piney Point satellite report #2
> > > Thank you very much for preparing and distributing these reports. I
> > > like to provide a clarification about the impact of the 2002
> > > event on Keys coral reefs. The documented declines of live coral
> > > at only two of the 43 sites monitored by the Coral Reef Monitoring
> > Project.
> > > The spatial extent of apparent blackwater impacts on reef communities
> > > limited, probably mainly because there are few reefs in areas of the
> > > Sanctuary impacted by the blackwater event. At one of those sites
> > > Keys off the north end of Big Pine Key), the decline was from very low
> > > pre-existing live-coral cover to even less live coral, i.e., the reef
> > > nearly devoid of live coral before the purported impact of blackwater
> > > (monitoring is conducted annually, and there may have been impacts on
> > > coral over that period in addition to blackwater).
> > >
> > > Chuanmin Hu wrote:
> > >
> > > > Dear all: our report #2 is ready at
> > > > http://imars.marine.usf.edu/Piney_Point/reports/
> > > > Also, (if you are not aware yet,) we have generated MODIS images in
> > > > real-time (within 2 hours of satellite overpass) for many areas.
> > > > come to http://modis.marine.usf.edu and choose one area (say, West
> > > > Florida Shelf) and click on qc.html - you'll love it! The 250-m RGB
> > > > images are available for some estuaries, for example "Florida Bay"
> > > > "Tampa Bay"
> > > > Cheers,
> > > >
> > > > Chuanmin Hu
> > > >
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > Coral-List mailing list
> > > > Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> > > > http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list
> > >
> > > --
> > > Brian D. Keller
> > > Science Coordinator
> > > Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
> > > P.O. Box 500368
> > > [Street address: 5550 Overseas Hwy., Main House]
> > > Marathon, FL 33050
> > >
> > > 305-743-2437 x25 fax 2357
> > > brian.keller at noaa.gov
> > > http://floridakeys.noaa.gov/
> > >
> > >
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Coral-List mailing list
> > > Coral-List at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> > > http://coral.aoml.noaa.gov/mailman/listinfo/coral-list
> Billy D. Causey
> Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary
> P.O. Box 500368
> Marathon, FL 33050
> phone: (305) 743-2437 x26
> fax: (305) 743-2357
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