Presentation on theme: "Common Prey Items Along the Texas Coast: A Fly Fishing Perspective Mark R. Fisher Science Director Rockport Marine Lab."— Presentation transcript:
Common Prey Items Along the Texas Coast: A Fly Fishing Perspective Mark R. Fisher Science Director Rockport Marine Lab
TPWD Resource Monitoring Program Overview Initiated in Stratified random sampling. Standardized methods. Gill nets (780/year). Bay trawls (1,680/year). Gulf trawls (960/year). Bag seines (2,160/year). Oyster dredges (1,200/year). Total—6,780/year.
Sample Locations, All Gears Combined n=175, fish species 324 invertebrate species
Diet of Legal-Sized Red Drum and Spotted Seatrout Opportunistic predators. Diet reflects habitat, feeding mode, prey availability and prey size. Trout consume shrimp and fish. Reds consume crabs, shrimp and fish.
Don’t put your finger in there! Upper PlateLower Plate
Prey Items Can Be Highly Seasonal! Spawning occurs in Fall (croaker), Spring (silversides), Winter (mullet), or year-round (blue crab, killifish). Rapid growth rates for some (shrimp ~ 1 mm/day); juveniles are typically the only edible size. Different life stages utilize different habitats— juveniles typically inhabit shorelines, subadults and adults in open water. Our bays are not food-limited!
Corpus Christi Bay Monthly Mean Water Temperatures
Gulf menhaden (Brevoortia patronus)
Monthly Abundance and Size of Menhaden from Coastal Bend Shorelines Late Fall/Early Winter Gulf spawners, 115 mm by age 1, 5 years max age
World’s Largest Menhaden? 2.9 pounds, 18.7 inches!
Bay anchovy (Anchoa mitchelli)
Striped anchovy (Anchoa hepsetus)
Dusky anchovy (Anchoa lyolepis) Maximum size – 90 mm Striped anchovy – 150 mm Bay anchovy – 100 mm
Distribution of Anchovies in the Coastal Bend
Dusky anchovy schools along Padre Island
Scaled sardine (Harengula jaguana) Size range— mm
Spanish sardine (Sardinella aurita) Size range— mm
Distribution of Sardines in the Coastal Bend
Distribution of Sardines by Salinity Zone
Mullet, striped and white (Mugil cephalus and M. curema)
World’s Largest Mullet? 30 inches, 7 pounds!
Killifish and Sheepshead minnow (Fundulus sp. and Cyprinodon variegatus) mm mm
Distribution of Cyprinodonts in the Coastal Bend
Killifish and Sheepshead minnow Habitat
Inland silverside (Menidia beryllina)
Distribution of Silversides in the Coastal Bend
Pinfish and Atlantic croaker (Lagodon rhomboides and Micropogonias undulatus)
Monthly Bay Trawl Atlantic Croaker Lengths Length class, mm
Gobies Family Gobiidae
Shrimp eel (Ophichthus gomesi) mm length
Brown, Pink, and White Shrimp Brown Pink White Browns are brown to olive green. Pinks are grayish to red-brown. Whites are bluish white.
Browns, White, and Pink Shrimp Life History Overview Offshore spawning Eggs hatch within 24 hours Postlarvae migrate into bays Fast growth, ~ 1 mm/day Migrate to deeper water as they get larger Brown—fall spawners White—spring spawners Pink—spring spawners. Browns & pinks burrow during the day
Brown Shrimp Distribution and Abundance
Coastwide Monthly Brown Shrimp CPUE Bay Trawls
Grass Shrimp (Palaemonetes sp.) mm total length
Distribution of Grass Shrimp in the Coastal Bend
Good Fly Selections—Flats, Grassy Shorelines, Creeks
Good Fly Selections—Jetty and Surf
Want to Know More?
Common Bait Species Within Texas Bays Pinfish Bay anchovy Inland silverside Gulf menhaden Mullet Sheepshead minnow Killifish Atlantic croaker Grass shrimp White and brown shrimp Blue crab Atlantic brief squid
Common Bait Species Along Texas Gulf Beaches Mullet Striped anchovy Dusky anchovy Scaled sardine Spanish sardine Bay anchovy Rough silverside Seabob White and brown shrimp Blue crab Sargassum shrimp Sargassum crab
Common Bait Species in Redfish Bay, South Bay and B&R Flats Pinfish Sheepshead minnow Inland silverside Killifish Mullet Bay anchovy Atlantic croaker Gobies Grass shrimp White, pink, and brown shrimp Blue crab Mud crabs