Mississippi Gulf Fishing Banks, Inc.

Partial Activity Report for the Period
June 14 thru July 12, 2007

During this period there was one dive monitoring trip conducted to Barge-A in FH-1 on June 30. Additional deployments and other activity may be covered by the DMR under a separate report.

840701 Barge-A 21F1
Position: 3003.605'N / 8836.636'W

It was initially desired to inspect the Casino Magic Barge and its 2 APCs, but a boat was fishing on it upon arrival so the plan was diverted to first inspect the A-Barge and then visit the Casino Magic Barge. However, the visibility was so poor on the A-Barge that the Casino Magic Barge dive was aborted. The A-Barge is a 180' X 70' X 12' Deck Barge deployed during the Summer of 1984 in FH-1 and was one of the first vessels deployed by MGFB. On November 8, 2001, several large pieces of concrete were deployed on her deck and has effectively enhanced the reef. Although the visibility was poor, several pieces of concrete were seen confirming that at least some of the rubble made it thru Hurricane Katrina almost 2 years ago. The deck of the barge has several pieces of soft corals growing on it, a feature that many of the newer reefs do not exhibit. The poor visibility rendered fish counts futile, but several red snapper, gray snapper, sheepshead, spades, blue runners, and the like were observed. Several smaller fish like cocoa damsels, blennies, and a spotfin butterfly were also seen. Several red snapper were caught topside including one around 10 pounds showing that this reef is still a viable reef despite its 23 years of age. Placing the concrete on its deck in 2001 really enhanced its effectiveness and more consideration should be given to similar reef enhancements of flat deck barges in the future.

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