Long Island Collecting Log: Things are heating up

by | Aug 21, 2015 | Eye Candy, Fish, MACNA, Science, Sustainability | 0 comments

A pair of reef butterflyfish. Photo by Ashleigh Gardner

A pair of reef butterflyfish. Photo by Ashleigh Gardner

It’s late August and, as always, things are heating up in the waters of Long Island. I haven’t had a chance to log many of my excursions for the past month – partly because I’ve been traveling, but mostly because I’ve spent so much time underwater that I haven’t had a lot of time or energy to write.

Blue Angelfish, Holacanthus bermudensis

Blue Angelfish, Holacanthus bermudensis

The great thing about collecting tropicals on Long Island at this time of year is that the fish are starting to put on enough size that they are becoming easier to spot in the water and easier to feed once you get them home. Also as Labor Day approaches, we are nearing the point of peak abundance and diversity of tropical fish species here. Since my last entry, the bigeyes have arrived in good numbers, the butterflyfishes have grown considerably, and for the first time in several years, blue angels are making an appearance. For most local collectors, angelfishes of any species represent the holy grail of species to catch here.

 I’ve seen at least 6 species of Serranids (groupers) so far this year, including one very exciting record for the state of New York and a range extension for the species. You can hear about that at my talk at MACNA on September 6.  I’ll also be discussing where and how to find all of these little gems, as well as some of the ecological implications of their presence here.


  • Todd Gardner

    Todd Gardner is a professor of Aquaculture and Marine Biology at Carteret Community College in Morehead City, North Carolina where he oversees a partnership between the college and The Biota Group, a world leader in sustainably cultured marine life. Todd's life and career have been shaped by his passion for ocean life and he has written numerous scientific and popular articles about his research and experiences collecting, keeping, and culturing marine organisms. Todd’s professional background includes work on a National Geographic documentary, commercial aquaculture at C-quest Hatchery in Puerto Rico, and an 11-year term at the Long Island Aquarium where he spent much of his time developing techniques for rearing marine fish larvae. To date he has raised more than 50 species. In 2013 Todd received the prestigious Aquarist of the Year Award from the Marine Aquarium Society of North America (MASNA). In his spare time, Todd dives, photographs marine life, runs marathons, and makes music.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Upcoming Events