Maywater

"Toxic Algae Bloom in Lake Erie" by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon - NASA Earth Observatory. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

“Toxic Algae Bloom in Lake Erie” by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon – NASA Earth Observatory. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

Every spring sea anglers begin to gather around our coast in anticipation of the summer migration. Mackerel, garfish (see Fish we Like), mullet, sea bream and bass all move inshore as the weather warms to either breed or feed. Then, just as the fishing looks set to be spectacular, the May water comes and spoils it.

May water is the colouring of the sea water due to algal bloom. As the sea temperature rises (drawing in the fish) so microscopic life stirs and the food chain whirs into motion. The sudden explosion of algae will cloud the water and sight-feeding fish (such as those mentioned) will become almost impossible to catch.

Some species, such as dogfish, are largely unaffected by the problem, but the sea can seem eerily empty come May time.

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