Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Wildlife Wednesday - little fish

First up, sorry I neglected Friday. I am battling post-holiday lethargy and a cold/flu, and trying to keep up with my other self...and it all crashed down on Friday.

So, I've decided that there's no beating myself up. When I can't get something done, it just won't happen, although I will try my best to keep on top of things.

So, today...

Our river is open to the sea at the moment, or it was and I haven't got down there post holidays, and that means a blast of clean water into this usually stagnant end. And this means lots more life - fish, crustaceans, birds, plant life, etc. It's always fascinating to me to watch the river come to life again. This is the second time we've got to see it in the last 7 years.

So, the other week we were exploring and tucked in under a heap of weed and Juncus spp. plants, was a school of tiny fish. I don't know if you can see them well in the top photo - they're in the middle to top of the photo, especially the right side. I shoved my camera underwater and snapped some shots of them there (bottom pic).

Rivers, estuaries, mangrove systems, are all places of vital importance for rivers and oceans, and us. They're the nursery grounds for so many species. We go in and chop down so many mangrove areas because they smell at low tide, block the view, look unsightly, etc etc, when in actual fact they're doing a job that is vital to survival.

Little fish need shelter to survive - plant roots, weeds, rocks, etc - and if we remove those things, predators get them, life cycles break. So we need these nursery zones kept clean and unaffected to allow plentiful fish stocks, crustaceans, even birds.

That's one thing I love seeing when the river opens - new life. It's fantastic. So many babies getting a start. So much of life continuing. It'll be sad when the river closes up again and stagnates...but hopefully it'll open again in the not too distant future!

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