Throughout the islands of The Bahamas, bonefishing is not only popular sport, but also an important component of the tourism industry that contributes greatly to the economic health of many communities. For such a valuable fishery, surprisingly little is known about bonefish movements, particularly when it comes to migrations associated with their reproduction. A recently implemented joint study in Grand Bahama is designed to help provide that information. Although bonefish pre-spawning aggregations have been documented near deepwater drop-offs near the coastlines of Eleuthera, Abaco, and Andros, only anecdotal information exists for the island of Grand Bahama. Although bonefishing guides have noted that large schools of bonefish occur on the south side of the island during the winter months, it is unclear where these bonefish originate. Historically, the large bonefish population on the north side of the island was reported to have used Hawksbill Creek to move to the south side. While building the port in the 1950’s and 60’s, however, Hawksbill Creek was blocked by the construction of a causeway. Since then, however, the man-made Grand Canal, which now bisects the entire island, provides a way for bonefish to traverse the island...but do they use it?
For more information on this study, please read our Fall 2013 CEI eNews: