A comparative study of brackish water fishes




Kemp, Robert J.

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Very little has been published on the brackish water fishes of the Texas Coast, and for this reason this study was undertaken. The brackish water ponds are unique in that seldom are two ponds encountered that have the same salinity. Thus each pond presents an ecological association all its own, with different plant and animal life present in each. Salinity of the water has been arbitrarily chosen as the controlling factor here. The ecology of each pond is probably governed by a combination of factors, but salinity is undoubtedly a major factor, and certainly one that can be measured and compared. Live Oak Peninsula was chosen for the site of this work because of the numerous ponds scattered throughout its length, and because of its accessibility to the Rockport Marine laboratory. The main body of this work was carried out on two ponds. These were Tule Pond, of very low salinity (very nearly fresh water), and Nine Mile Pond, of relatively high salinity. Two other ponds and one flowing stream were checked, but not intensively studied. This study centers around fish, but in addition a fairly complete ecological survey was attempted. The plant and invertebrate life have been covered to some extent