Sunday, April 17, 2011

Days 19 and 20: Killifish and Me Lay Siege to Marsh

Whenever the marsh floods I push a huge log up to the bank to make a floating dock for the wheelbarrow, and load out the sludge that way. Here's two hours condensed to 90 seconds:

This was my first all-marsh weekend. I usually only spend one day, but having been absent for two weeks I felt obligated. The combination full moon, storm and high tide completely flooded the site. And on the deluge rode massive schools of inch-long killifish.

The water seethed with them from the mouth to the culverts. I'd seen a few darting around before, but never in this abundance.

Many congregated near the grass. They'd swirl around each other and plunge into the sand after I don't know what.

When I approached they'd sometimes do a little flip, momentarily flashing a bright silver side toward me. I wonder if this is meant to disorient predators.

While searching the main pool for a spot to plant my new yardstick, I discovered the bottom of the marsh in almost completely carpeted in dead wood. Removing that will take some doing. For now, the wood graveyard is feeding a large algal bloom that sprouted just in the past month.

On Saturday Broc and I recycled some marsh boards into an osprey platform. Permits pending, we hope to install it next weekend for Earth Day. If you're reading this and want to join us, come anytime between 10 and 2 and we'll find something for you to do.

High of 61, average wind SW @ 18 MPH, 6.0 high tide @ 07:40 AM. Moon @ 97%.
New yard stick installed. Water level recorded at 11 inch mark.
Birds seen in marsh: mallard, robin, starling, crow, American oystercatcher
Birds seen in bay: black brant, red breasted merganser, gannet

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