Re: diminished kelp???

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Posted by halibug on February 25, 2015 at 09:34:02:

In Reply to: diminished kelp??? posted by brad on February 23, 2015 at 17:04:10:

This is something we can agree on my friend, the live trap fishery is no good for local waters and has hurt significant kelp species such as Sheephead. But to say it has destroyed all the kelp beds in our waters does not add up. This brings up another thing I have issue with. Those groups who try to claim they are responsible for restoring kelp to our local waters, just not true. The single greatest factor in the kelp demise, then resurgence, then demise,,,,,, is water phase. Believe it or not, the El Ninos can remove most of the kelp in our waters. I will stick with what I personally witnessed, 1983 Laguna coast is covered in kelp, I have pics of the large island style kelp bed off Picnic beach, stalks ten feet wide. That year started a strong el nino and by 85 I could not find a kelp bed in Laguna. By the way, we did not see one live trap in that area. But the side benefit was the influx of Lobster larvae swept into local waters during the warm phase and by 1990 we saw a decade of excellent bug diving at all our spots along the Laguna coast. another strong El nino hit around 1997 and the warm phase continued into the early 00s. Around this time local waters switched to a La Nina, not a neutral, but a cold water phase that lasted a decade. the first Laguna kelp bed I noticed was off Main beach, then there were large beds off Cress, Mountain Road, and Brooks. Even our small reefs off Victoria Beach were loaded with kelp, As far as I know, there were not kelp restoration projects off any of these spots. Dont get me wrong, those efforts are very noble and may spark an area, but it is the cold phase that has 90% of the effect on kelp growth. By 2012 I can say that every single spot we had in Laguna had some degree of kelp growth. I also know PV followed a similar pattern with kelp beds stretching from Cabrillo to Malaga, and just one decade earlier kelp was scarce during the warm phase. Long winded, but I must say these are the reasons for our ever changing kelp beds in So Cal.

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