Yay! I was so pleased today to discover where ‘my’ sea bass had slunk off to. Through the summer I’d enjoyed my daily view into the world of the bass that live in the harbour. I’m not prepared to say exactly where they are in case they get taken for someone’s table, which would really destroy my viewing pleasure. I call them bass – I’m a long way from being convinced that’s what they really are – probably some other kind of Labrid…but I call them bass – more to do with their banded reddish colours than any other more scientific indication.
The image above shows off one of the bass. The other fish is a good sized spotty, so, the bass is clearly not a spotty. The dark blob in front of the bass is a mussel – I’d guess it’s an average sized adult – about 100mm long. I’d guess the spotty is in the region of 200 mm, which would make the bass about 400mm long – give or take a millimetre.
I used to watch the bass (it looked like a pair) almost every day through the summer. They seemed to occupy about 4 metre long by 1 metre wide by 2 metre deep territory, and although they appeared to continually be roving over the mussel beds covering the wharf piles, I never saw them interact with each other or with the spotties. Over the winter the section of wharf broke away and the bass vanished with it. As usual, I’m more interested watching the fish than catching than catching the fish. In their new location the lighting is better, so hopefully in time I’ll score some better images. Their new space (if it is the same fish) appears to be more long lasting, as well as better lit. Real estate – everything in Wellington is about upgrading.