Mississippi Gulf Fishing Banks, Inc.

Partial Activity Report for the Period
February 13 - April 8, 2004

During this period, there was 2 Reef Monitoring Trips conducted by PRIMOFISH.COM. Spotter Operations for the month may be covered by the DMR under a separate report. On March 7, a trip was made to the 040202-418F2 Barge Pieces, however zero visiblity rendered that trip fruitless. On April 3, video and observations were taken on the Gwen Tide and DISH Wreck in FH-13.

031125 Gwen Tide Reef, 417F13
Bow Position: 29°59.560'N / 88°31.870'W 12454.8/47020.9/29606.2
On April 3, a trip was made to the Gwen Tide which was deployed on November 25 and first visited on January 22. Observations revealed significant marine fouling taking hold. Barnacle encrustation is causing the vessels name to fade. Small bait fish consisting mostly of pin fish, cigar minnows, and small blue runners were very abundant (over 1,000) and there was a significant population of larger Sheepshead (150-200/5-7 lbs. each) which has been common on MGFB’s shallower reefs in the Spring. Only a few game size red snapper (6-8/6-8 lbs. each) were sighted, but there were many juveniles present (50-75). Small Spade fish were still prevalent as they were on the January visit and still seemed to like hanging around the upper deck side rails of the vessel. The fads were still functioning well and the reef overall is progressing very nicely. Fish still swim freely in and out of the wheel house, but most of the small bait fish were outside of the vessel on this visit. This vessel is particularly enjoyable as a diving reef.

011207 DISH Wreck (Deer Island South Hampton Reef), 260F13
Bow Position: 29°59.829'N/88°30.109'W 12472.4/47022.1/29625.0
A comparison dive was made on the DISH Wreck to compare this 28 month old reef with the 4 month old Gwen Tide. The heavier encrustation of barnacles and higher deterioration of smaller rails and ladders was very apparent. There was also a much larger population of game size red snapper (150-200/5-10lbs. each) and an adult Blue Angel had taken residence (seen on previous visits). The vessel did seem to lack the large population of grouper that had been witnessed on previous visits, but a few juveniles were sighted. Snapper and Grouper were also sighted on the rubble pile located just north of the vessel. The vessel is performing well and is ready to produce quality red snapper for this season.

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