north florida - wild florida - suwannee sound

By: marsHen , 11:47 AM GMT on February 01, 2013

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05:40, 32F, clear. waning gibbous moon over the cabbage palms near house. roosters crowing. donkeys braying. dogs howling. everybody's hungry. lamb bottles heating up. frost in sheep pasture and cactus field. pretty. chilly day to be going to the river but somebodys got to do it.. probably won't catch much.
09:10, medium tide rushing in at suwannee river. 49F, north wind, 5 knts. partly cloudy. sunny. moderate wind and fairly smooth seas changed the sampling plan from working in the river to working offshore. oyster bars crowded with brown pelicans, cormorants, oystercatchers, gulls.. flocks of ducks all over, but no razorbills or loons. very low catches in our offshore bait seine sets. very strong incoming tide. got more fishes in the offshore trawls. netted stingrays in almost every set. mostly males. the atlantic stingrays (Dasyatis sabina) are coming into the estuary to breed. pelicans kept following us and getting disappointed. 2 trawls yielded 20 gallons of comb jellies (ctenophora) with a few fish and crabs mixed in. caught two florida gars, ~ 1 meter long. water temperature, 13C, 55.5F. a light chop. cloud cover increased and wind picked up in early afternoon, NW 10 knts. 59 degrees no longer felt balmy. moderate chop. came back to boat ramp via east pass. large, 8-10 ft. gator sunning on a mud bank tucked into the cypress. a beautiful, busy day.
16:20, 58F. short but fresh hay at feedstore! got 4. everyone tucked right in. should have gotten more but at 7.50/bale gotta be frugal. unloaded feed. started a chili.
19:10, 46F, mostly cloudy but some stars.. tired. chili was decent. fire going. cat and book waiting. will probably fall asleep..

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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.