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A juvenile gray smoothhound shark caught in the beach seine. 
These sharks are viviparous, meaning they give birth to live young.

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Biologists pulling a purse seine through the Pocket Marsh to sample the fish community.  The Pocket Marsh is not connected to the Full Tidal Basin; it is joined by culverts to Outer Bolsa Bay, which receives its tidal waters from Huntington Harbor. The Pocket Marsh experiences a muted tide, meaning it does not experience the full range of extreme high and low tides. The most common fish in the Pocket Marsh are topsmelt (Atherinops affinis), longjaw mudsucker (Gillichthys mirabilis), California killifish (Fundulus parvipinnis), staghorn sculpin (Leptocottus armatus), and cheekspot gobies (Ilypnus gilberti).

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Bay pipefish and juvenile kelp bass collected in the eelgrass in the Full Tidal Basin. The eelgrass (Zostera marina) habitat establish in the Full Tidal Basin by a transplant in 2007 is the preferred habitat of species such as the pipefish. The pipefish are camouflaged by their similar color and shape to eelgrass, which helps them avoid predators. The eelgrass also provides a sheltered habitat for juvenile fish such as these kelp bass.

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The length of a longjaw mudsucker (Gillichthys mirabilis) from the Pocket Marsh being measured on a ruled fish board. During fisheries monitoring, each fish captured is identified, weighed, measured, and released back to the same location it was captured.

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A purse seine deployed in the Full Tidal Basin.  The purse seine is a net that extends from the water surface to the seafloor. It is deployed in a circle with a boat to form a round enclosure in the water column. Once it is set out, the bottom of the net in cinched up with a line from the boat (like a purse), preventing fish from escaping. The net is pulled into the boat and the fish are transferred to tubs of water to be identified, weighed, measured, and released.

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A jacksmelt (Atherinopsis californiensis ) captured at the upper end of the Full Tidal Basin. Jacksmelt are only occasionally captured in the Full Tidal Basin. They typically live in inshore waters but are also found in bays. They are a schooling fish that tends to inhabit surface waters, which makes they great prey for foraging birds and other large fish.

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Biologists pulling a purse seine through the Pocket Marsh to sample the fish community.  The fish sampling in the Pocket Marsh has revealed a large fish population that provides abundant forage for the fish-eating birds commonly seen in there, including great egret, snowy egret, great blue heron, reddish egret, belted kingfisher, and osprey.

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Biologists gathering a school of small topsmelt (Atherinops affinis) collected in the beach seine in the Full Tidal Basin. The beach seine often captures large schools of small fish such as topsmelt in numbers great than 1000. To minimize the impact on the fish and to avoid having to weigh and measure each fish, a sub-sample of fish are collected and the rest simply weighed and released. Based on the sub-sample the average weight per fish can be calculated and a count of the released fish estimated based on their total weight.

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A giant kelpfish (Heterostichus rostratus) captured and returned to the Full Tidal Basin.  Giant kelpfish can change color to match the color of their surrounding habitat. This kelpfish was captured in an eelgrass bed and was nearly the same color as the eelgrass blades.

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Bay pipefish and juvenile kelp bass collected in the eelgrass in the Full Tidal Basin. The eelgrass (Zostera marina) habitat established in the Full Tidal Basin by a transplant in 2007 is the preferred habitat of species such as the pipefish. The pipefish are camouflaged by their similar color and shape to eelgrass, which helps them avoid predators. The eelgrass also provides a sheltered habitat for juvenile fish such as these kelp bass.

http://www.healthprose.org/

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A juvenile gray smoothhound shark caught in the beach seine. 
These sharks are viviparous, meaning they give birth to live young.

http://www.healthprose.org/

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A large California butterfly ray (Gymnura marmorata) caught in purse seine along with small round stingrays (Urobatis halleri). The California butterfly eats bivalves, crustaceans, mollusks, and crabs on the bottom of the Full Tidal Basin. Like other rays it has a spine, however its position on the back of the ray makes it difficult to be stung and they are easy to handle. 

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A thornback (Platyrhinoidis triseriata) being measured. The thornback is a ray only occasionally captured in the Full Tidal Basin. They tend to bury themselves in the sand or mud bottoms of bays or near kelp forests. They feed on small invertebrates in the sediment. Their distinct trait, from which they get their name, is a set of thorn-like structures that runs along their back from their eyes to their tail.

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Biologist weighing a thornback (Platyrhinoidis triseriata). To weigh large fish without injuring them, species such as this thornback are slung in a small net and weighed with a spring scale. 

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A gray smoothhound shark (Mustelus californicus) foraging in the shallows of the Full Tidal Basin. This small shark is harmless to humans. Its teeth are short and blunt and suited for grinding shellfish. It eats bottom dwelling organisms such as crabs, clams, worms, and some small fish. These sharks are typically found in shallow coastal waters or in bays.

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An adult and three juvenile slough anchovy (Anchoa delicatissima) from the Full Tidal Basin. The fish sampling program in the Full Tidal Basin has revealed that many species are using the basin to reproduce. The calm waters of the basin and the eelgrass habitat that has developed there provide shelter and food important to many reproducing fish and invertebrates species. Slough anchovy are an important food source for the various tern species that nest on the Nesting Sites created by the restoration project.

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An example of the typical catch in an otter trawl. The flatfish diamond turbot (Hypsopsetta guttulata), the seas slug navanax (navanax inermis), and the speckled scallop (Argopecten ventricosus) are commonly captured in the otter trawl. The otter trawl is a net that drags along the bottom to sample the demersal, or bottom-dwelling, fish and invertebrate species. Two wooden “doors” are attached to the front of the net and hold the net open as it is pulled through the water by a small boat.

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