Watch this incredible bonefish spawning aggregation video!

bttCheck out this awesome video of a bonefish spawning aggregation, and then read on to learn more about bonefish research being done by CEI’s collaborator, the Bonefish & Tarpon Trust.

A message from the Bonefish & Tarpon Trust:

One of BTT’s top priorities is to learn enough about the biology of bonefish, tarpon, and permit so that we can focus conservation efforts on the most important aspects of these important gamefish. Which habitats and life stages are most critical? As you know from our monthly updates, identifying juvenile habitats, migrations, and adult habitat use are constantly in our crosshairs. Only with this information in hand can we propose effective conservation strategies like habitat protections, which we have long been pursuing in the Bahamas with collaborators Cape Eleuthera Institute, Fisheries Conservation Foundation and Bahamas National Trust.

Identifying spawning locations has long been a top priority for BTT. Experience in other fisheries has shown us that lack of spawning protections often results in fishery declines. After years of collaboration with scientific colleagues, guides, lodges, and anglers, we are making significant headway with bonefish. In 2011, Andy Danylchuk of University of Massachusetts Amherst and colleagues at Cape Eleuthera Institute documented that bonefish spawn at night in offshore waters. Following up on that research in other locations in the Bahamas, we have now added significantly to our knowledge of spawning – long-distance spawning migrations, pre-spawn staging, and movement offshore to spawn – and have documented amazing numbers of bonefish engaged in this behavior.

The next steps are to work with collaborators in the Bahamas to get these important locations protected and to use this information to identify spawning locations in other places, such as the Florida Keys. Identifying spawning locations in the Florida Keys will be a necessary step as we work to rebuild the Keys bonefish population through ourĀ Florida Keys Initiative.

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