Site #13: Old Tampa Bay at FL 60, E side of bridge, W of Tampa

Sunday morning arrived with true vacation-like weather, blue skies and bright sunshine. Charles and Harvey left for AL, intending to collect all the way home. After wolfing down yet another motel breakfast, the remaining stalwarts (Allen, Dan, David, Chip, Doug, Dustin, Fritz, & Steven) assembled to watch the SC boys attempt to cram an unbelievable amount of gear into Chip's overloaded truck. None of them could have imagined that bungi-webs could stretch that far! Perhaps a trailer is in order. Bus? Flatbed?

On Sunday morning, everyone watched in amazement as the SC boys crammed ever more gear into Chip's truck.
It's also designed to carry humans.

Following Allen through Tampa's freeway system, the group arrived beside Tampa Bay where Sig & Ben Klein, as well as Rob (West Palm Beach, FL) once again joined them. The tide was out, exposing a wide expanse of very shallow water. Dan and Dustin made a beeline for the nearest water with their seine, while the others opted for dipnets. The seagulls were very pleased at each effort, swooping in to feed wherever the seine had rested.

At Tampa Bay, they wasted no time getting the nets into the water. L-R - Dustin, David, Fritz, & Dan.  In the distance is the Howard Frankland Bridge.
Low tide gave the group lots of area to work easily. L-R - Chip, Doug, Allen Boatman (Lutz, FL), Dan, Ben, Dustin, Fritz, & David

Rob Lawracy (West Palm Beach, FL) models the latest spring fashion...the horseshoe crab hat. Try finding this in your local store...handbag & gloves optional.

Something about the sea air must have enhanced the already over-worked collective humor of those sampling. Dan and Dustin had a brief mud 'n sea matter fight. Rob modeled his new horseshoe crab hat, and Chip bombed someone's dipnet with bright green mussel shells.

After an hour or so, the gang walked across the highway to sample a small body of water on the other side. At first, nobody noticed the sign that said, "NO FISHING - NO TRESSPASSING." Upon closer examination, the fine print stated that the penalty was that offenders would be asked to leave. Soon, they all left without being asked.

 On the other side of the highway. Oops!...uh, guys... L-R - David & Dustin

Species observed/collected included:
Sheepshead minnow (Cyprinodon variegatus)
Goldspotted killifish (Floridichthys carpio)
Gulf killifish (Fundulus grandis)
Rainwater killifish (Lucania parva)
Spot (Leiostomus xanthurus)
Red drum (Scianeops occellata)
Pipefish (Sygnathus sp.)
Mojarra (Eucinostomus sp.)
Mullet (Mugil sp.)
Clown goby (Microgobius gulosus)
Goby (Gobiosoma sp. and/or Gobionellus sp.)
Puffer (Sphoeroides sp.)
Anchovy (Anchoa mitchelli)
Striped blenny (Chasmodes bosquianus)
Blenny (Hypsoblennius sp.)
Gulf toadfish (Opsanus beta)
Pinfish (Lagodon rhomboides)
Gulf flounder (Paralichthys albigutta)
Stone crab
Pistol shrimp
Blenny (Hypsoblennius sp.)

Gulf killifish (Fundulus grandis)

Pipefish (Sygnathus sp.)

Pistol shrimp (Alpheus sp.)

Puffer (Sphoeroides sp.)

Juvenile red drum (Scianeops occellata)
Stone crab (Menippe adina)

Gulf toadfish
(Opsanus beta)

As the group plotted the next move, Steven departed for GA. L-R - Rob, Dustin (barely visible), Steven Ellis (Kennesaw, GA), Doug, Dan, Allen, Fritz, & Ben (Photo by Chip Rinehart)

As they began to plot a course for the next location, Steven departed for GA. Those who remained visited nearby Southern Apisto's, co-owned by Mike Jacobs and Jim Cormier. Some purchased fish and enjoyed looking around the place before hitting the road again. They also said goodbye to Allen at that time.

These next three pix were taken in the fishroom at Southern Apisto's (all three photos by Doug Dame).