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Old 07/30/2009, 07:45 AM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NJ
Posts: 423
first seahorses of summer

While seining for fishing bait last week (July 26) in Barnegat Bay, NJ, near the Point Pleasant Canal I caught my first 'tropicals' this year. Among them were 5 seahorses, all caught in just two passes of the seine through seagrass in about 3 feet of water. Four were large very pregnant males, about 4 inches long, and one was a juvenile about one inch long. I immediately released the gravid males. They are, I think, part of the permanent H. erectus population in New Jersey's Bays. I kept the tiny horse, placing it in a 90 gal. tank which contains mostly live rock, a pair of Mandarin fish, a Cowfish, various gastropods, shrimp, ricordia, hardy corals, etc.
We also caught a Spiny Boxfish (C. schopfi),and a few very small Spotfin butterfly fish, barely post- larval. The butterflys were, of course, released. The Spiny Boxfish (about 1 inch) I kept and is now in the 90 with the seahorse. Both will go to friends when they acclimatize. I brought a 2 inch starfish back for a small Tritons Trumpet, which couldn't consume the whole thing. Interestingly, the Cowfish, caught last year, which lives in the same tank, ate pieces of the starfish after the T.T. finished with it. I'd never seen that before. The Cowfish is a bit larger than a golf ball. It was a 3/4 inch orange 'bean' last summer.

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Old 07/30/2009, 08:40 AM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 166
I was seining a little more south (Gravel Point Beach, its looking at AC- I believe its Mystic Island?) and I caught a little less than a dozen seahorses, and some pipefish. I released everything since I no longer have a tank dedicated to seahorses.

From what I hear, seahorses have been in abundance this summer. Glad to hear.

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