Day 11 of Life Beneath the Keel

On Sunday 13 September, at 1800 BST, The Island Trust is live streamingLife Beneath the Keel’ from Plymouth Yacht Haven as part of the Ocean Institute’s virtual Maritime Festival. This is the eleventh in a series of blogs about the marine life we hope to discover then.

Day 11:  10 September 2020 | Fishes

Fishes bring us to the more familiar members of the chordate phylum – vertebrates. The most commonly seen fish in marinas are mullet, often seen swimming around the pontoon grazing on the animals we’ve already seen growing on the hard surfaces or seaweeds like the hydroids and bryozoans (image 1).

There are also occasional non-natives like these grey triggerfish in Plymouth Yacht Haven (image 2).

Not an alien! I took this in Panama City and show it to prove that it’s always worthwhile to get down on the deck and look in the water in marinas (image 3).

Also not an alien. This flying fish was looking very lost in the yacht and fishing harbour in St Mandrier, Provence. My guess was that it was a chucked over by a fishing boat and was lucky to still be alive (image 4).

If you’re lucky and stealthy you might find one of these juvenile lumpsuckers, which are unbelievably cute (image 5).

Anglers (if they’re lucky) will see more, and bigger fish, than we will, looking from the pontoon deck. The Baited Remote Underwater Video (BRUV) or CrabCam (if we’re lucky) will also show us some fish. Examples include the Pomatoschistus pictus, Painted goby in image 6, Trisopterus luscus, Bib or Pouting in image 7, and the Dicentrarchus labrax, bass in image 8.

Ballen wrasse – this one was feeding on the netted dog whelks which were going for the bait (squashed mussels). You can just see one hanging out of its mouth (image 9).

John Hepburn, Ocean Discoverability Project Manager
10 September 2020