La Perouse Seagrass Watch undertook an initial survey at Astrolabe Bay on Wednesday morning (18/6/08). The group included Seagrass Coordinator for the Region, Carla Sbrocchi, Ecodiver Dave Thomas, and local resident Alain. They reported meadows of Halophila sp. mixed with some Caulerpa taxifolia around La Perouse point(S33/59/421; E151/13/656) and around to Frenchman’s Bay. Straps of loose Posidonia were sighted. Marine creatures included Orange Biscuit Starfish (Tosia australis), a school of Kingfish including one around 1 metre, a school of catfish, urchins, a Shovelnose ray (Aptychotrema rostrata), Maori Wrasse(Ophthalmolepis lineolatus), Magpie Morwong(Cheilodactylus nigripes), Yellowtail (Seriola lalandi), Red Rockcod(Scorpaena sp.), Fortesque(Centrapogon australis) , Half Banded Sea Perch (Hypoplectrodes macchullochi), Crimson banded Wrasse (Notolabrus gymnogenis) and 4 Blue Gropers(Archerodus viridis). Visibility around 3-5 metres on a falling tide. Seagrasses patchy at depth of 10 metres. Meadows at 8 and as shallow as 4 metres. Weather initally overcast after days of patchy rain, but clearing and sunny by mid-morning.
PHOTOS L-R: Survey area; heading into the water; surface area of main meadows of Halophila; Shovelnose ray (taken by Dave). For some great marine images including some of the species listed: click here
Keeping watch on the Port were a group of Silver gulls(Larus novaehollandiae), a Kelp gull (Larus dominicanus), a number of Crested Terns (Sterna bergii), a Pied Cormorant(Phalacrocorax varius) and out of the picture a group of Sooty Oystercatchers(Haematopus fuliginosus), White-faced heron (Ardea novaehollandiae) and a Little Black Cormorant (Phalacrocorax sulcirostris).