Reef Central Online Community
Live Aquaria

Home Forum Here you can view your subscribed threads, work with private messages and edit your profile and preferences View New Posts View Today's Posts

Find other members Frequently Asked Questions Search Reefkeeping ...an online magazine for marine aquarists Support our sponsors and mention Reef Central

Go Back   Reef Central Online Community > Special Interest Group (SIG) Forums > SCUBA/Snorkeling
Register Blogs FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read

Notices

User Tag List

Reply
Thread Tools
Old 03/16/2018, 09:32 AM   #451
GoNoles
Registered Member
 
GoNoles's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
Posts: 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
Ron,

Thank you so so so so so much for this thread. I am truly thankful. I am visiting the keys for the first time in September and my wife for our three year anniversary. We have never snorkeled, so this will be our first time. We are either going to shoot for a rental house or I may go for the Blackfin resort! I hate to spend a lot of money as I doubt we will ever be inside.

I recently started a small reef tank so I hope to collect some green zoas and maybe a few little critters. Is there any hope of finding pistol shrimp and shrimp gobies anywhere in the keys? I have loved catching and viewing wildlife since I was a kid. I am lucky that my wife enjoys accompanying me. The keys sound like my paradise.

Luckily we have plenty of time to plan and acquire gear. I think we will buy our own mask, fins, and whatever else needed. I'm going to try to get the Akona gloves you wear as well.

Again, thanks so much. I can't wait to get out there and snorkel! I am tempted to try the canals around Miami for cichlids as well!

Be careful! Many areas in the Keys are Marine Sanctuaries, and as such, are no-take zones. Also, check with Florida Fishing laws as to limits/prohibitions on taking wildlife.

https://floridakeys.noaa.gov/regs/welcome.html

http://www.myfwc.com


GoNoles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/16/2018, 10:17 AM   #452
ahud
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 516
Thanks!

I am studying those regulations, I don't want to get in any trouble. I bought an ID book as well so I can throw that in my bag and reference in case I am unclear on anything. From what I gather, as long as I recognize the take limits (5 polyps per person for zoas) and do not collect in sanctuaries then I should be golden. I'm a legal eagle lol, not a fan of breaking rules when it comes to wildlife.

I'm sure we will spend the first half of the trip exploring and getting everything figured out before we decide to collect anything. I'm worried about navigating the waters via kayak. Is there any good information on tides? The rivers and lakes where I live are very calm, I have not kayaked choppy water. It looks like all of the areas you can collect from need to be accessed via boat/kayak. Do you recommend a sit on top kayak for easy in and out at the cost of padding ease, or a sit in sea kayak?

I'm coming up short on any type of shrimp goby in Florida. The popular websites list "Indo Pacific" as the area the fish are from, which is not helpful. I know KP Aquatics collects in the Keys and they do not list any shrimp gobies on their website.

Another thing is we are trying to decide how long to stay. We are a 12.5-hour drive so two days will be spent traveling.

I'm a huge cichlid fan and one of my dreams is to go collect in Peru. I'm pretty excited about the opportunity to collect and keep critters. I'll cherish those Zoas if I am lucky enough to collect and transport them safely!


ahud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/17/2018, 05:10 PM   #453
water is wet
Registered Member
 
water is wet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Angola, Indiana
Posts: 184
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
Thanks!

I am studying those regulations, I don't want to get in any trouble. I bought an ID book as well so I can throw that in my bag and reference in case I am unclear on anything. From what I gather, as long as I recognize the take limits (5 polyps per person for zoas) and do not collect in sanctuaries then I should be golden. I'm a legal eagle lol, not a fan of breaking rules when it comes to wildlife.

I'm sure we will spend the first half of the trip exploring and getting everything figured out before we decide to collect anything. I'm worried about navigating the waters via kayak. Is there any good information on tides? The rivers and lakes where I live are very calm, I have not kayaked choppy water. It looks like all of the areas you can collect from need to be accessed via boat/kayak. Do you recommend a sit on top kayak for easy in and out at the cost of padding ease, or a sit in sea kayak?

I'm coming up short on any type of shrimp goby in Florida. The popular websites list "Indo Pacific" as the area the fish are from, which is not helpful. I know KP Aquatics collects in the Keys and they do not list any shrimp gobies on their website.

Another thing is we are trying to decide how long to stay. We are a 12.5-hour drive so two days will be spent traveling.

I'm a huge cichlid fan and one of my dreams is to go collect in Peru. I'm pretty excited about the opportunity to collect and keep critters. I'll cherish those Zoas if I am lucky enough to collect and transport them safely!
I don't have a answer for all your questions but I prefer a sit on to kayak for ease of getting on and off. My wife and I use Hobie kayaks which have flippers that you operate with foot pedals and steering is controlled by a rudder or you can use the kayak paddles and we love it. We've only been down about 5 different times now but it's always pretty obvious what the water conditions are like as to wether you want to go out usually if it's rough in one area you can find another spot that's fairly calm by going to the other side of that island at least that's been my experience.

A 12hr dive is easily doable in 1 day my drive is about 21hrs without including stops and we get there in 2 days.


water is wet is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03/18/2018, 06:11 AM   #454
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,670
Quote:
Originally Posted by flacousa View Post
Just get a shorty it helps in the months before and after the summer around $60 at Amazon, I also got a full size Lycra to fend off Jellyfish and it also helps with cooler waters
Ha! I have a full dive skin and wet suits in several thicknesses already. But if you want to be in the water for long periods of time, even good wet suits leave me wanting better (cold hands, cold face...). And cooler or cold water and short days make for far less interesting life on the sea floor (especially shallow reef areas). If you want to go see the big reefs for 60 to 90 minutes, cool water isn't much of an issue. But shallow, near shore wildlife just doesn't come out much until it gets warmer.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03/18/2018, 06:14 AM   #455
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,670
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
Thanks!

I am studying those regulations, I don't want to get in any trouble. I bought an ID book as well so I can throw that in my bag and reference in case I am unclear on anything. From what I gather, as long as I recognize the take limits (5 polyps per person for zoas) and do not collect in sanctuaries then I should be golden. I'm a legal eagle lol, not a fan of breaking rules when it comes to wildlife.

I'm sure we will spend the first half of the trip exploring and getting everything figured out before we decide to collect anything. I'm worried about navigating the waters via kayak. Is there any good information on tides? The rivers and lakes where I live are very calm, I have not kayaked choppy water. It looks like all of the areas you can collect from need to be accessed via boat/kayak. Do you recommend a sit on top kayak for easy in and out at the cost of padding ease, or a sit in sea kayak?

I'm coming up short on any type of shrimp goby in Florida. The popular websites list "Indo Pacific" as the area the fish are from, which is not helpful. I know KP Aquatics collects in the Keys and they do not list any shrimp gobies on their website.

Another thing is we are trying to decide how long to stay. We are a 12.5-hour drive so two days will be spent traveling.

I'm a huge cichlid fan and one of my dreams is to go collect in Peru. I'm pretty excited about the opportunity to collect and keep critters. I'll cherish those Zoas if I am lucky enough to collect and transport them safely!
ahud, I saw your PM and replied with my phone number. Call and we can talk.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/06/2018, 04:46 AM   #456
sdweller
Registered Member
 
sdweller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Key Largo, Florida
Posts: 44
If you do not want to invest in a wetsuit you can always rent one
from any dive shop . The current water temp on the reef is 75-76
degrees . Have a good time on your trip .
Sea Dwellers


sdweller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/09/2018, 11:10 AM   #457
icy1155
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 744
Give Ron a call, he'll hook you up with some good info. I'll try to answer a couple of your questions:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
I'm worried about navigating the waters via kayak. Is there any good information on tides? The rivers and lakes where I live are very calm, I have not kayaked choppy water.
If you're kayaking pay attention to the NOAA tides for the specific area you are in. The current can run pretty good around the bridges so getting in or out through there at tide changes can be difficult. If I'm fighting the tide in a kayak I'll usually go right to shore instead of through a pass and then carry it along shore. The chop shouldn't bother you... you'll get a little wet when its choppy, but you're getting in the water anyways.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
It looks like all of the areas you can collect from need to be accessed via boat/kayak. Do you recommend a sit on top kayak for easy in and out at the cost of padding ease, or a sit in sea kayak?
I've done quite a bit of snorkeling and even some diving from a kayak and paddleboard, and I would defiantly recommend a sit-on over a sit-in. If you get swamped with a wave or two (which can happen even in good weather) your sit-in will be full of water, but with a sit-on or a paddleboard the water goes right off. With that said, there are places that you can defiantly collect right from shore depending on what you are looking for and your comfort in the water. Ron can hook you up with some good spots, and I know quite a few that you can do some collecting from a kayak or shore as well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
I'm coming up short on any type of shrimp goby in Florida. The popular websites list "Indo Pacific" as the area the fish are from, which is not helpful. I know KP Aquatics collects in the Keys and they do not list any shrimp gobies on their website.
There are no native symbiotic shrimp gobies in the Caribbean. There are pistol shrimp, but as far as I know they wont pair with the pacific shrimp gobies. That's not to say that fish don't ever pair with a goby in the Caribbean, but it's not a normal thing like it is in the Pacific.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
Another thing is we are trying to decide how long to stay. We are a 12.5-hour drive so two days will be spent traveling.
Whatever you decide, it's better to book early. September is towards the beginning of Lobster season, so thing can fill up pretty quickly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahud View Post
I'm a huge cichlid fan and one of my dreams is to go collect in Peru. I'm pretty excited about the opportunity to collect and keep critters. I'll cherish those Zoas if I am lucky enough to collect and transport them safely!
Is it just zoas that you are mainly looking to collect? Between Ron and myself we should be able to give you all the advice you need for some fun, legal collecting. PM me if you have any questions after talking to Ron.


icy1155 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/12/2018, 12:46 PM   #458
gfcashmo
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 5
Any special places in the tortugas? We r doing a day trip there in a few weeks. I know what the tour groups say to snorkel. Any good spots that they are not advertising we can get to from the beach?


gfcashmo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/17/2018, 07:05 PM   #459
SaltySully
Registered Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Big Pine Key, Fl
Posts: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by gfcashmo View Post
Any special places in the tortugas? We r doing a day trip there in a few weeks. I know what the tour groups say to snorkel. Any good spots that they are not advertising we can get to from the beach?
No collecting in the dry tortugas it is a national park, the whole thing is a no take zone.

Sent from my LGMS550 using Tapatalk


SaltySully is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/18/2018, 05:13 PM   #460
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,670
Quote:
Originally Posted by gfcashmo View Post
Any special places in the tortugas? We r doing a day trip there in a few weeks. I know what the tour groups say to snorkel. Any good spots that they are not advertising we can get to from the beach?
There are small coral heads in shallow water all around the fort, even on the old coal dock pilings and the moat wall (ocean side). But NO collecting.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/18/2018, 05:13 PM   #461
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,670
One of the coolest things that has ever happened to me in my almost 15 years in the hobby, happened today. I was doing some maintenance in my 125g DT (I have an algae issue). I went to grab a wad of hairy algae off a rock that has a couple of RBTA’s on it. As my hand got close, I saw something move and disappear into the sand next to the rock. It happened so fast and I wasn’t really looking at the sand, but at the algae on the rock, that I had no idea what it was. I took a small frag out of the tank and went to the spare room where I do fragging and other maintenance. When I came back out with the cleaned up frag I looked to see if there was anything there… or if my mind was playing a trick on me. But no, it wasn’t my imagination. It has a central disk that’s about 1” or a little bigger and has 7 to 9 VERY branchy legs that when fully extended make it about 3” to 4” in diameter. I didn’t get to see it very long as it disappeared into the sand again pretty quickly, but I was pretty sure it was a basket star! BTW, I've NEVER put a basket star in my tank on purpose! It must have hitchhiked in on something I collected in the Florida Keys or the beaches of Sanibel! Here is a very short You Tube video.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sIID...ature=youtu.be


Here is a still of it.



And the next time it was out I got a real treat! I was ready to shoot more video and I got over a minute of it eating! The video is a bit choppy as it had to be reduced in size to email from my cell phone to my computer. Here is a 90 second You Tube video, I hope you enjoy it!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Clun...ature=youtu.be


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04/19/2018, 07:50 PM   #462
ace_92101
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cebu, Philippines
Posts: 759
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
One of the coolest things that has ever happened to me in my almost 15 years in the hobby, happened today. I was doing some maintenance in my 125g DT (I have an algae issue). I went to grab a wad of hairy algae off a rock that has a couple of RBTA’s on it. As my hand got close, I saw something move and disappear into the sand next to the rock. It happened so fast and I wasn’t really looking at the sand, but at the algae on the rock, that I had no idea what it was. I took a small frag out of the tank and went to the spare room where I do fragging and other maintenance. When I came back out with the cleaned up frag I looked to see if there was anything there… or if my mind was playing a trick on me. But no, it wasn’t my imagination. It has a central disk that’s about 1” or a little bigger and has 7 to 9 VERY branchy legs that when fully extended make it about 3” to 4” in diameter. I didn’t get to see it very long as it disappeared into the sand again pretty quickly, but I was pretty sure it was a basket star! BTW, I've NEVER put a basket star in my tank on purpose! It must have hitchhiked in on something I collected in the Florida Keys or the beaches of Sanibel! Here is a very short You Tube video.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sIID...ature=youtu.be


Here is a still of it.



And the next time it was out I got a real treat! I was ready to shoot more video and I got over a minute of it eating! The video is a bit choppy as it had to be reduced in size to email from my cell phone to my computer. Here is a 90 second You Tube video, I hope you enjoy it!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Clun...ature=youtu.be
Interesting. They look a little like stinging hydroids.


ace_92101 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04/20/2018, 08:02 AM   #463
Ron Reefman
Registered Member
 
Ron Reefman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cape Coral, FL
Posts: 10,670
ace, I also posted this in the 'Inverts" forum and mndfreeze suggested that it might be, and I think I agree, that it's a sea cucumber. The mouth/feeding parts that this kind of cucumber puts up out of the sand looks very much like the basket star, so they could easily be confused. The way they eat and clean off the tentacles is the same.

But the research I did says basket stars tend to find a place to attach and stay put for long periods of time. The sea cucumber moves around under the sand. The star can curl up into a ball and make itself small, but the cucumber can pull in all the feeding tentacles into it's mouth and disappear into the sand, which is exactly what this one did in the first video.

I'm cleaning up an algae issue in the 125g tank so I can start selling off the corals (I have tons of zoas) in the tank that this animal is in. I want to downsize by selling off the 125g and just keep the 50g cube that is currently sharing the same sump. So I'd love to 'collect' this guy and move it to the 50g which has a deeper sand bed that is newer and sugar fine rather than the older and very crusty sand that is in the 125g.


__________________
The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it. (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Visit my build thread http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017
Ron Reefman is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:31 AM.


TapaTalk Enabled

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2018 Axivo Inc.
Use of this web site is subject to the terms and conditions described in the user agreement.
Reef CentralTM Reef Central, LLC. Copyright ©1999-2014
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.3.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.