Net Notes

The VIMS Juvenile Fish and Blue Crab Trawl Survey conducts scientific sampling year-round in the James, York, and Rappahannock Rivers, and in lower Chesapeake Bay.  Net Notes is a periodic column describing interesting observations from survey research.

Summer 2013

The Survey catches the first Fourspot Flounder since 2008, along with some Red Goatfish and Roughtail Stingrays.

September 2012

Two similar looking porgies, Scup and Pinfish, can easily be distinguished from one another through examination of their teeth.

July 2012

The first occurrence of an Ocellated Flounder and a Whitefin Sharksucker on the Trawl Survey.

March 2012

Five juvenile Atlantic Sturgeon are collected from the Pamunkey River.

September 2011

Species rarely encountered by the Survey, such as Red Goatfish and Florida Pompano, are seen, along with a large Black Drum and Spiny Butterfly Ray.

September 2010

Spotfin Butterflyfish are colorful tropical reef fish that occasionally stray into Chesapeake Bay.

May/June 2010

The unique looking Atlantic Cutlassfish is common in Chesapeake Bay.

December 2009-January 2010

Trawl survey researchers observe several Northern Sand Lances, a species that is rare in Chesapeake Bay.

October-November 2009

The Survey catches Chain Pipefish, Atlantic Bumper, Bluespotted Cornetfish, and Planehead Filefish.

September 2009

Survey scientists observe Longnose Gar, a primitive species with bony scales and a beak-like snout full of very sharp teeth.

August 2009

Survey scientists observe large Summer Flounder throughout the survey area.

June/July 2009

Survey scientists encounter Banded Drum, Skilletfish, and a 52-inch wide Butterfly Ray.

April/May 2009

In addition to well-known spring arrivals like Spot, survey scientists encountered several lesser-known species such as Silver Hake and Chub Mackerel.

February/March 2009

Among those species making their annual spring migration into the Bay are Atlantic Croaker and Summer Flounder.

October 2008

Several unique species, including Rough Scad and Fringed Flounder, appear among the regular autumn fish assemblage.

September 2008

Survey scientists have seen Penaeid shrimps with increasing regularity during the last several months.

August 2008

Survey scientists note the presence of Atlantic Moonfish, Northern Stargazer, Blue Runner, and Bullnose Rays.

May 2008

Survey crew record several of Chesapeake Bay’s lesser known species: the Lined Seahorse, Atlantic Cutlassfish, and the Threespine Stickleback.

April 2008

The influx of seasonal species into Chesapeake Bay continues.

March 2008

Atlantic Croaker and Summer Flounder make their annual spring migration into the Bay.

November 2007

Survey scientists record the first verified record of Rock Seabass in Chesapeake Bay.

October 2007

The VIMS Juvenile Fish Survey team records two species infrequently seen in Chesapeake Bay: Star Drum and Gray Snapper.

September 2007

Survey personnel identify several Crested Blennies, a fish species previously unrecorded from Chesapeake Bay, but common in waters south of Virginia.

August 2007

Survey scientists record several intriguing species including Bluespotted Cornetfish, Orange Filefish, Silver Seatrout, and Blue Runners.

June/July 2007

Large Atlantic Croaker and Summer Flounder, a 60-lb. Black Drum, and high densities of skates and rays throughout the lower Bay.

May 2007

More large Atlantic Croaker, the first Spiny Dogfish since 2002, and the first Roughtail Stingray since 1993.

April 2007

Croaker, Weakfish, and the year's first Northern Puffer.

March 2007

The VIMS Juvenile Fish survey now regularly catches Blue Catfish in the upper York River.