Estuarine reconnection of an impounded mangrove salt marsh in the Indian River Lagoon, Florida: short-term changes in fish fauna

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Fish population dynamics in a 24.3 ha mangrove-dominated mosquito impoundment in east-central Florida were examined by seining and culvert traps before and after installation of culverts that established estuarine connection for the first time in 39 years. In a 27-day period following the culvert opening, fish species increased from 9 to 21, while total number of fish in the impoundment decreased. Movement of fishes through culverts in both directions commenced immediately following culvert opening. Recruitment of transient species into the impoundment appeared to key on a single wind-driven high tide event. Such short-term events may be important cues for fish movement into and out of impounded salt marshes.

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