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Tin Can Bay (Cooloola) marine biodiversity assessment: species list and 4K underwater video footage

We recently completed the first underwater marine biodiversity assessment for Tin Can Bay (Cooloola, Queensland). With great support from the local boating community, Cooloola Coastcare, and the Gympie Regional Council, we knocked over the 40 dives required and recorded around 230 species.

Tin Can Bay is an estuary system at the bottom of the bay created by Fraser Islandsuper popular with fisherfolk, it is a high use and high impact patch of water.

This film shows some of the highs and lows. My best guesses at naming the critters are listed below…

—Josh

Time What
0:10 Red lateral mark at the mouth of Snapper Creek
0:17 Typical bottom showing lack of structure and life
0:20 Top of Seary’s Ledge made of coffee rock
0:22 Patches of small soft corals and hydroids
0:25 More structure = more life
0:27 Common lionfish (Pterois volitans)
0:30 Pink fan, orange colonial ascidian, brown feather star, purple soft coral
0:32 Broad squid (Photololigo etheridgei)
0:34 Cuttlefish (Sepia sp.)
0:37 Barnacles feeding
0:39 Juvenile sixbar grouper (Epinephelus sexfasciatus)
0:41 Striped catfish (Plotosus lineatus)
0:44 Pink nudibranch (Tenellia sibogae) feeding on an orange hydroid
0:46 Paradise whiptail (Pentapodus paradiseus) photobombing Fat sea pen (Veretillum australis)
0:49 Close polyps of a Fat sea pen (Veretillum australis)
0:51 One of the 19 anchors encountered during the survey
0:54 One of the poorly attempted artificial reefs we found
0:59 Flying gurnard (Dactyloptena orientalis)
1:01 Another anchor, well encrusted and without rope or chain
1:03 One of many derelict crab pots used by squid for egg laying
1:06 Another lost crab pot, home to sponges and a subadult Mother-in-law fish (Diagramma picta)
1:08 Yet another lost crab pot with floated line, home to squid eggs and a Bearded filefish (Anacanthus barbatus)
1:11 Closeup of Bearded filefish (Anacanthus barbatus)
1:13 Blue swimmer crab (Portunus pelagicus) and Striped puffer (Arothron manilensis) trapped in lost pot
1:16 Cutting escape holes in derelict crab pot
1:18 Blue swimmer crab (Portunus pelagicus) busting out
1:23 Pair of Spottedfin bigeyes (Priacanthus macracanthus)
1:25 Well-camouflaged spider crab (Hyastenus campbelli)
 1:28 Striking seastar (Euretaster insignis)
1:30 Longeye hermit crab (Dardanus lagopodes) giving its eyes a polish
1:35 Unidentified decorator crab feeding on Fouling soft coral (Carijoa sp.)
1:38 Snoozing hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
1:40 Turtle with facial barnacles and young Estuary cod (Epinephelus coioides)
1:43 Sleeping Australian goatfish (Upeneus australiae)
1:45 Juvenile Mother-in-law fish (Diagramma picta) hanging with Rifle cardinalfish (Ostorhinchus kiensis)
1:48 Ocellated coralfish (Parachaetodon ocellatus) still sleeping at 7:15am due to poor visibility induced darkness
1:50 Kuhl’s stingray (Neotrygon kuhlii)
1:52 Wolf fangblenny (Petroscirtes lupus) looking after eggs laid inside dead Razor clam (Pinna sp.)
1:55 Young adult Queensland (Giant) grouper (Epinephelus lanceolatus)
2:00 Not sure which filefish (Paramonacanthus sp.)
2:02 Grass tuskfish (Choerodon cephalotes) waking up from tyre home
2:05 Redlined nudibranch (Flabellina rubrolineata) charging across the bottom
2:07 Monster nudi (Ceratosoma trilobatum)
2:10 Spotted nudi (Goniobranchus daphne) cruising over coffee rock
2:12 Three-bar porcupinefish (Dicotylichthys punctulatus) among coffee rock boulders
2:14 Ornate spiny lobster (Painted crayfish) (Panulirus ornatus) reaches out an touches camera
2:19 Kuhl’s stingray (Neotrygon kuhlii) mostly buried
2:22 Blackspot waspfish (Liocranium praepositum)
2:24 Unidentified baby poo-brown seastar
2:27 Striped puffer (Arothron manilensis)
2:29 Starry sandperch (Parapercis nebulosa)
2:31 Unidentified sand diver (Trichonotus sp.)
2:34 Mother-in-law fish (Diagramma picta) feeding
2:36 Estuary cod (Epinephelus coioides) scoffing a cuttlefish
2:39 Estuary cod (Epinephelus coioides) choking on a cuttlefish
2:41 Cook’s cardinalfish (Ostorhinchus cookii) gets out of the way of Laced moray (Gymnothorax favagineus)
2:46 Ornate spiny lobster (Painted crayfish) (Panulirus ornatus) sharing a hole with an unidentified moray
2:49 Not sure which filefish (Paramonacanthus sp.)
2:51 Probably a fingered dragonet (Dactylopus dactylopus) but looks more like Kuiter’s dragonet (Dactylopus kuiteri)
2:53 Mystery dragonet beating up Starry sandperch (Parapercis nebulosa)
2:58 Bristle worm (Chloeia flava) chasing a tube worm down its hole
3:03 Variable crinoid shrimp (Periclimenes ceratophthalmus) on an unidentified feather star
3:06 Northern coral breams (Pentapodus porosus) and another unidentified feather star
3:08 The only hard coral colony I found in the survey (Tubastrea sp.)
3:11 Immaculate goby (Valenciennea immaculata)
3:13 Estuarine stonefish (Synanceia horrida)
3:16 Poison bristle nudibranch (Pteraeolidia semperi)
3:18 Pair of them
3:20 Pair with coral breams
3:22 Dusky flathead (Platycephalus fuscus)
3:25 Fishiest patch at Seary’s Ledge featuring stripeys, butterflyfish, snappers and butterbreams
3:28 Round batfish (Platax orbicularis) subadult
3:30 Another one of those unidentified filefish hiding in another unidentified crinoid
3:33 Probably a Variable shrimpgoby (Cryptocentrus fasciatus) but maybe something else
3:35 Green turtle (Chelonia mydas) with a shark bite
3:42 Olive sea snake (Aipysurus laevis) hunting
3:52 Australian humpback dolphin (Sousa sahulersis) greets us back at the boat ramp; filmed from in the boat
3:56 Every estuary diver’s favourite sight: my volunteer boat driver didn’t go home without me

Questions and comments welcome below…

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Comments & Questions

2 Comments on "Tin Can Bay (Cooloola) marine biodiversity assessment: species list and 4K underwater video footage"

Carole Philipp

Congratulations Josh and Maree!
Wonderful work as usual. Maybe one day Noosa will understand the value
of a similar project in our river system.

wpDiscuz
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