Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

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Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby Ali Perkins » Thu May 06, 2010 11:21 pm

I was diving out at Great Barrier Island last weekend with the Auckland University Underwater Club. I noticed that a mystery muncher had been holepunching the Ecklonia. Do you know who/what did this?

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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby long john » Thu May 06, 2010 11:30 pm

A butterfish is wot dunnit. The Ecklonia was smaller when the vicious, unprovoked attack occurred but the Ecklonia has grown up some since then, hence the size of the wound.
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby NEMES1S » Thu May 06, 2010 11:49 pm

Its the Armageddon....first crop circles and now Seaweed Circles... "The end is near!" :lol:
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby Ali Perkins » Fri May 07, 2010 9:28 am

Thanks Long John. I knew you'd have an answer for me. Red tells me you spend quite a bit of time out at Great Barrier. :) I figured that Butterfish might be the culprit (there were a lot around) but it was the size of the holes that put me off that idea. It didn't occur to me that the holes in the Ecklonia might grow with it. The spearo guys and gal made a very small hole in the Butterfish population on the weekend!

Seems slightly more plausible than Nem's suggestion! :lol:

Do you know, do the Butterfish chomp holes out of the Ecklonia as the leaf is folded in half or do they make that perfectly circular hole with the leaf flat? I have not witnessed one feeding up close. Might have to leave the tank behind to see that.
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby binklebonk » Fri May 07, 2010 9:45 am

Ali Perkins wrote: Might have to leave the tank behind to see that.


That's one option.... :wink:
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby Cameron_R » Fri May 07, 2010 9:50 am

binklebonk wrote:
Ali Perkins wrote: Might have to leave the tank behind to see that.


That's one option.... :wink:


Didn't take long did it! This is going to get annoying pretty quickly :lol:
Last edited by Cameron_R on Fri May 07, 2010 10:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby NEMES1S » Fri May 07, 2010 9:57 am

binklebonk wrote:
Ali Perkins wrote: Might have to leave the tank behind to see that.


That's one option.... :wink:

And so it starts.... :roll: ha ha ha
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby binklebonk » Fri May 07, 2010 10:33 am

Just sayin is all....


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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby Ali Perkins » Sun May 09, 2010 10:37 pm

I posted the same question on Wade Doak's forum and got this response from Kendall Clements.
http://www.wadedoak.com/disc1_toc.htm

This looks like the bite of a silver drummer (Kyphosus sydneyanus) to me. It's too big for a butterfish bite, and the bite edge shows indications of individual teeth (butterfish have a fused beak). Silver drummer contain large circular chunks of Ecklonia in their stomachs, and this is how they get there!
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby long john » Mon May 10, 2010 8:08 pm

Lousy Kendall! Well, he is a professor so I'll defer to him. My bad.
When we burley snapper, we use the same sniping position on the same rock often (good sniping positions are hard to find) and a prerequisite of a good sniping position is nice ecklonia cover and a good solid one you can use as a handhold to keep you steady in the swell. So you tend to notice changes in that one ecklonia you use as a handhold. I have seen little butterfish bites on new 'leaves' get bigger as the kelp grows but I must admit, not to those real big sizes. That part was assumption. Oops!
Ah, Red. Have wasted many hours in that wheelhouse. The boat is ideal for what we do but maybe not so much for tankers? He put yous on the 4m pin N of Wellington Head? It's one of those places I'd love to tank. There's a huge cleaning station there run by monty mado. I've seen many a 25+kg kingi parked up on it, big trevs, a resident school of golden snapper, tarakihi, giant boarfish, monster snapper, big porae and blue moki schools etc etc. Honestly, it's not that far short of Northern Arch or those other PK current traps.
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Re: Holey moley - can you solve this mystery?

Postby Ali Perkins » Mon May 17, 2010 12:11 pm

long john wrote:Lousy Kendall! Well, he is a professor so I'll defer to him. My bad.


That's cool. You offered a theory. You don't have to believe everything you read on the internet.

I had been pondering your theory anyway and the thing that wasn't fitting for me was that I recalled that the holes I had seen were all of a fairly uniform size, about the size of a plastic milk container cap. If they were butterfish bites that grew as the kelp grew, I would expect to see a whole range of different size holes. I took heaps of pics of the holes and they were all pretty similar in size (yes, my buddies were unimpressed by my photographing holes in kelp, they were looking at me like this: :roll: ).

long john wrote:Ah, Red. Have wasted many hours in that wheelhouse. The boat is ideal for what we do but maybe not so much for tankers? He put yous on the 4m pin N of Wellington Head? It's one of those places I'd love to tank. There's a huge cleaning station there run by monty mado. I've seen many a 25+kg kingi parked up on it, big trevs, a resident school of golden snapper, tarakihi, giant boarfish, monster snapper, big porae and blue moki schools etc etc. Honestly, it's not that far short of Northern Arch or those other PK current traps.


:( I think the pin you are referring to was one that he put the spearos on. I would have loved to dive it but no such luck for those on tanks.
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