marsHen's WunderBlog

north florida - wild florida

By: marsHen, 1:19 PM GMT on June 28, 2014

08:30, 79f, partly cloudy. hot here. been hot all week - afternoon temperatures in the mid-90's with no rain on the gulf coast.. very high and low tides due to the solstice. the roseate spoobills are back.
very glad the sheep got sheared last month. breeding season is on us with the advent of the summer solstice. I sold my big ram last month and now have 2 yearling rams from 2 different cracker flocks.
the yard is a jungle, despite mowing. but the lane looks like a bomb hit it. the electric co. came in with big machines and whirling blades and cleared the power lines, then bush-hogged all the brush. took out everything on the ground. the day before I was looking at the tall grasses, smilax, shepherds needles, beauty berry and thinking I needed to get the sheep in there to do some mowing... nothing left now! but will be interesting to see how it reseeds itself..
trawled the non-seagrass beds in econfina last wednesday. water temperatures, 22C, 89f.. water the color of pepsi. still the same wiry brown algae with mussels growing on the seagrass roots. a few sprouts of thallasia, turtle grass, but mostly mussels and algae. some oyster spats growing on the mussel mass so guess that's good. did 10 trawls and did not find many fish and no scallops at all. took samples. trying to document this through our sampling year - may through november.. it was not like this last year although the seagrass was struggling due to the massive freshwater incursion from all the rain we were blessed with through this past year.
predicting scallop season will be a bust on the upper gulf coast except in a few areas where the population has found some seagrass and maintained itself. the lengthened season the governor has cooked up to help the economy has not helped the scallops - the scallops are small now so twice as many will be taken, and the extra weeks added to the end of the season impacts the remaining large scallops that spawn at the end of august, into sept., oct. and then there's the out of state scallopers who impact the scallop beds and further reduce the population all for the low cost of a florida fishing license ...
politics will do us in yet..

Updated: 1:22 PM GMT on June 28, 2014

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north florida - wild florida

By: marsHen, 1:55 AM GMT on June 23, 2014

05:30, thunder.. storm coming in from the gulf and woke me up with all the thunder and lightning and carryings on. the rain came down in buckets. got 1.6" of rain by 08:00.
overcast then sunny with dark clouds to north and east all day.
09:00, upper 70's. high solstice tide. spoonbills on flooding bar at #3 bridge. rain showers.
18:20, storm moved in from the east. lots of lightning and loud thunder. rain was amazing. big limb fell from a laurel oak right by sheep/hay barn. had been sitting on a bale of coastal wondering whether I should just run to the house. rain guage reading over 3.0"..
cabbage palms starting to bloom. pine warbler at bird bath.

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north florida - wild florida - rocky hammock

By: marsHen, 11:02 AM GMT on June 12, 2014

06:30. 71f, mostly cloudy. orange and purple sunrise! thunder in the north. sheep coming in from pasture. big red rooster walks down the lane with us. good morning.
22:00,76f, partly cloudy. full moon up in the east. guardian barking in the front yard.
another rain storm went through CK and levy county around noon. had the net off the fence cause I saw those black skies and knew what was coming. rained so hard in the wind it damped the workhop under a 20 ft. overhang. my net mending tools got wet. the cat got damp but hid under a pile of old computer monitors when the thunder rolled..
got 1.7" of rain at the farm. soaked the clothes on the line so thoroughly that I had to put them in the wash machine again and wring them out. we needed that rain.
calm now and pretty out. good night, moon..

Updated: 3:08 AM GMT on June 13, 2014

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north florida - wild florida - suwannee sound

By: marsHen, 1:19 AM GMT on June 12, 2014

water temperatures have gotten up to 28C, low 80's, in the sound. the river temperature is lower, 26C, 79f, very pleasant. the river is still quite high and the current very swift. salinity readings at east and west passes on an incoming tide are 1-2 ppt - very low. we are catching freshwater fish, like the black crappie and the golden shiner, in the lower delta. catches in the river are low due to the flooding.
the game fish are coming in to the estuary. last week's catches were sizable, ranging from 5 different species of stingrays, including a large rough-tail ray, to the usual game fish - trout, sheeps head, snook, redfish, black drum, jack cravelle, atlantic croaker, and ladyfish.. plus the usual bait fish, pinfish, pigfish, spot, yellow-tail, and one round scad, which generally prefer clear, salty waters and are not often caught in this area. one set on cedar point had dolphin helping us out and chasing the jacks into our net. catch of the day was a green turtle that we netted out by corrigan's reef. it was measured and released, as were most of the fish. it's been rather hot but often there's a pleasant sea breeze.
it was hot and humid this morning in CK with a high moon tide. around noon, a storm blew in with winds strong enough to blow the bait seine at right angles to the fence I had hung it on to wash earlier. some gusts probably reached 30 knts. there were waves out on the bayou. afterwards the temperatures dropped into the pleasant 70's.
rain guage at the farm measured 0.6" of rain. my clothes got soaked again on the line but we needed the rain . sold the big ram last week and now there are 2 young rams shouldering each other and acting big.. all the ewes are ignoring them. finally got some decent, but short, hay from the feedstore. pleasant evening here with the moon rising through the clouds in the east. 76f.

Updated: 1:28 AM GMT on June 12, 2014

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About marsHen

marine biologist around the Suwannee River delta. Raise Cracker sheep on an old Cracker farm ~ 12 mi. (as the crow flies) from the Gulf.