Blacktip Shark and Lookdown

Blacktip Shark - Carcharhinus leucas

Spent most of the week-end at the beach in Orange Beach, Alabama.  We fished off the beach almost all day Saturday and caught several different species.  A newly documented species for me was this small Blacktip Shark (Carcharhinus limbatus).  Among the group, we caught 7 total, all very small.  I noticed an interesting pattern of pores under and behind the eye.

Blacktip Shark - Carcharhinus limbatus

Another interesting fish caught off the beach by my Brother in law, Gordon, was this Lookdown (Selene vomer).  I have seen pictures of the Lookdown before, but didn’t realize how thin and compressed they really are!  Cool fish!

Lookdown - Selene vomer

I had taken several pictures before I realized I had my camera set to Black and White.  There was a little color at the beach too, though I kind of like the B&W effect……

Orange Beach, Alabama

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Bighead Searobin – Fort Morgan AL

Bighead Searobin - Prionotus tribulus

I spent a few hours yesterday afternoon and evening on the pier at Fort Morgan, AL.  It had been several weeks since I last fished and in talking with Jack that afternoon, we decided to head down to the pier.  Jack wanted to throw his cast net for mullet, so I took my ultralight rod and rigged it with a small 1/16 oz. jighead and a small white Gulp curlytail grub.  I caught 6 different species of fish and the most unusual was this Bighead SearobinPrionotus tribulus.  What a photogenic guy he was with all his spikes and armor and his dramatic fan like pectoral fins!  The name Searobin refers to the way he uses his huge pectoral fins like the wings of a robin as he swims.  This was the first one I have ever seen, and quite honestly, I did not even realize they existed locally.  I caught him right at dusk, and come to find out they are typically nocturnal feeders.

Bighead Searobin

Three rays of each pectoral fin are separated as feelers and evidently are used to scratch the bottom and feel for shrimp and other food items.  Interestingly, the ventral fins which are back toward the anal fin on most fish, are located right under the pectoral fins.  The feelers can be seen forward of the huge pectoral fins and the white ventral fins can be seen peeking out behind the pectoral fins in both pictures above.  As you can see below, his body is pure white underneath and the fin placement and configuration is clearly  visible…..well…except for the water spot on the lens!  He was safely returned to the water after his brief photographic ordeal.

Bighead Searobin