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Gone Fishing

I am going to take some time out from this blog to try and complete a couple of projects that I’ve started, but am having trouble finishing. So there may be no new posts here for a while.

In the meantime you can subscribe for my irregular email updates here:

And check the ‘Community Home’ page for updates from other readers with their nature photographs and more here:

And here’s a picture I took of a fisher, a darter cormorant, in Kakadu National Park a few years ago.

Interestingly according to one account of life in the Lower Murray in South Australia one hundred years ago there was a bounty on cormorants (that are closely related to darters), with 34,000 taken in one year ostensibly because they ate too many fish [1].

[1] Travels in Australasia, by Wandandian see page 301

26th July 1909 at Caurnamont, near Mannum

‘Birds were very scarce, though we saw one fine old spoonbill wading round the swamp and swinging his head from side to side in the peculiar fashion these birds have while feeding.

On the latter day, while out shooting, I picked up a freshly decapitated turtle of the kind called by the natives “emys,” and on meeting a fisherman enquired of him whether he had caught many, and why it was without a head.

He replied that the turtles were so destructive of fish spawn, that a scalp fee of one penny was paid on the head of each by the Government, and that he caught a good many from time to time.

On further enquiry, I found that in the past year the South Australian Government had paid over £600 in scalping fees to various people for 116,000 turtles and 34,000 cormorants, thus satisfactorily explaining why the cormorants are so shy, and look upon every man with suspicion; for when one contemplates what a hunting they must have in the course of the year to furnish such an enormous “bag,” it would be decidedly strange if they were at all otherwise. In spite of all this I saw hundreds of them on the Murray and lake waters, so that I am sure many must pour in from outside to take the place of those that are shot, and should this be the case it will be many years before their numbers are at all reduced, or the Government get anything like the full value for their money, or even justify its expenditure.’

[Back then Murray cod were plentiful despite the turtles and the cormorant though now there are no Murray cod in that stretch of river below Lock 1.]


3,962 Responses to “Gone Fishing”

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  1. Comment from: spangled drongo

    gav needs to grasp this if he is ever going to understand the complexities of ice-melt and SLR.

    GRASP dances with GRACE and DORIS.

    The only certainty is the degree of uncertainty. TRF underlies all the measurement of the earth. Lot of great links and messages if gav can ignore the messenger:

  2. Comment from: Ian Thomson

    Someone posted that ‘Muddied Waters” was to air soon on TV , on 7 mate. Can’t find the post.
    Help ?

  3. Comment from: Neville

    Ian here’s that post from Debbie.

    Comment from: Debbie December 2nd, 2012 at 8:00 am

    I still do not understand how the top and the bottom of the southern MDB (Eucumbene & the barrages at the Lower Lakes) were cordoned off as political ‘ no go’ zones.
    It defies common sense and the resultant MDBP can only lead to the creation of more problems not the creation of sensible solutions.
    We all ended up arguing over a number based on a mythical long term average.
    Obviously it was mostly about a political outcome not a practical workable outcome.
    On Dec 9th at 9am EST on 7 TWO there will be an interesting doco called ‘Muddied Waters’ that will highlight some of the silly nonsense and the myths that have developed around the Murray River, especially around the Lower Lakes & the Coorong.
    Several South Australians are involved.

  4. Comment from: gavin

    “We just see a progressive acceleration of glaciers which is causing more and more ice loss. And we think that that picture is consistent with oceanic warming in that area of Antarctica.”

    “But the ice sheets aren’t the only ice that’s vanishing. Melting glaciers in Alaska, the Canadian Arctic, South America’s Patagonia and elsewhere are also raising sea levels. “The next step is to take this comprehensive approach to ice in the rest of the world,” says W. Tad Pfeffer, a glaciologist at the University of Colorado Boulder. No one is studying those other regions as intensely as the polar ice sheets, he says, but they are “a huge contributor with a huge lack of information.”

  5. Comment from: spangled drongo

    Yes gav, and what’s causing the other 80%?

  6. Comment from: debbie

    Here you go Ian,
    This is the information email re the documentary ‘Muddied Waters’:

    Hi there,

    thought you would be interested in watching this doco- Muddied Waters. It will be showing on channel 7 TWO (that’s Prime2) 9.30 on Sunday Dec 9.

    Please pass this on so that people can get the full story about the Murray Darling Basin.

    click on the link below to find out more about the doco.

    “Water is King, and he is Knight who uses it successfully to make two blades grow where nature produced none.” J.S Sherman 1894

  7. Comment from: gavin

    SD; “what’s causing the other 80%?” indeed!

    It was early yesterday that I wrote an aggressive post aimed at deniers inc that ended with, where did you get your glacier loss >20%SLR from? Fortunately for die-hard regulars it disappeared into the atmosphere but I then had to reconsider the latest ice loss/SL papers and your interpretation.

    There could be some confusion as there is a hockey stick situation in recent decades for both land ICE loss and SLR underlying all recent data. In some places we are discussing less than 1mm/y SLR, in others 3mm/y. I dug this link from from discussion in your link Shepherd @ wuwt btw

    On TRF, from “Recent Ocean Modelling Articles”; “Physical processes that impact the evolution of global mean sea level in ocean climate models”

    Go back to lumpy earth and variable G, THEN track glacier mass loss, determine SL sign, track SL, review heat budget, track global Temp, find causes?

  8. Comment from: Robert

    It’s okay, gav. There’s plenty of ice about, if you like the stuff. There may not be as much as in the ’70s…but you don’t want ’70s ice levels any more than you want orange shag-pile, Bogart Flairs or Blaxploitation movies.

    Move on from the 70s, warmies! Climate changes.

  9. Comment from: sp

    Gav – you ned to start taking your medication again!

  10. Comment from: spangled drongo

    “Move on from the 70s, warmies! Climate changes.”

    Just so, Robert, but from all that unquantifiable gobbledegook I’m sure they don’t really know which way.

    Think gift horse, looking in mouth.

  11. Comment from: el gordo

    So what’s happening with the weather?

    The freezing winters in the NH is caused by a wayward jet stream and ‘blocking’, while in Oz its blowing hot and cold. Is this the same mechanism in the SH?

    The public want to know, in simple language, the cause of these extremes.

  12. Comment from: spangled drongo

    Even Ol’ Travesty himself still admits that the uncertainties in OHC data remain too large.

    “According to Trenberth, scientists need to significantly reduce the uncertainties in the ocean heat content data before they can suspend the search for the missing heat. “The discrepancies among [upper-ocean heat content data sets] remain huge. We MUST do better,” he told Appell.”

    That recent ARGO data has been adjusted upwards, says it all.

    Nothing is happening and that is a travesty.

  13. Comment from: spangled drongo

    A few obs on stats and modelling from David Springer at JC’s:

    Three statisticians go hunting. When they see a rabbit, the first one shoots, missing it by a foot on the left.
    The second one shoots and misses it by a foot on the right.
    The third one shouts: “We’ve hit it!…

    The mean weight of all statiscians in the world is 3 lbs.*******

    Being in love means never having to say you’re sorry. Being in statistics means never having to say you’re certain.

    Data sets are like people. Torture them enough and they’ll tell you whatever you want them to say.

    Celebrating your birthday is good for your health. Statistics prove the more of them you celebrate the longer you are likely to live.

    Shoe size is highly correlated with income and education level.

    A statistician is a person who draws a mathematically precise line from an unwarranted assumption to a forgone conclusion.

    The great majority of people have more than the average number of legs.

    Scientists use statistics as a drunk uses a lampost; for support rather than illumination.

  14. Comment from: Robert

    EG, whenever there’s extreme cold, ice, snow it’s due to “blocking”, regardless of hemisphere. If you get enough “blocking” it can lead to “masking” of CAGW.

    Of course, it’s really best if you can get the love media not to talk about cold. (I only happened to learn about the NH when I saw a pic of someone in Alaska or Canada opening his door from the inside and finding only a few inches of gap at the top. The rest was a new wall of snow.)

    That “record” sea ice recovery after the “record” melt is coming with a cost to Europe. It’s too bloody COLD. (Sorry, I meant too bloody BLOCKED). Re my inverted commas on the word “record”: I find it hilarious that supposedly scientific people draw climate conclusions from satellite data that started in 1979. I mean, if the data stretched back to 1979 BC it would still be pretty flimsy.

    Early 2012 brought a truly historic cold to Eastern and Northern Europe over a huge area. But, sssh, you can’t be trusted with such knowledge. You may not understand about “blocking” and “masking” like the grown-ups do. On the other hand, the summer heat in the US is safe for us children to read about.

  15. Comment from: Johnathan Wilkes


    “But, sssh, you can’t be trusted with such knowledge. You may not understand about “blocking” and “masking” like the grown-ups do. On the other hand, the summer heat in the US is safe for us children to read about.”

    Robert, the Bunyip has a video that explains the mindset of these people, not exactly related to warmists but about people with the same mentality.
    Rather longish but well worth watching, unless you know it already.

  16. Comment from: el gordo

    Thanx Robert

    Its a Scandinavian High and it appears to overwhelm the AGW signal.

    ‘The Big Freeze that heralded the start of December is set to continue, with sleet, snow and hail covering much of the country all week.

    ‘The cold snap will persist, with temperatures dropping to a lower-than-average -8C in Scotland and four inches of snow expected tomorrow, and another four inches likely later in the week.

    ‘High pressure in Scandinavia can indicate one of the most well-known snow setups, in which the pressure front moves from Siberia into Scandinavia, and then ridges westwards, giving the British Isles a chilly easterly airflow.

    ‘Continental air from Russia is very cold and dry, but as this air passes over the North Sea, it warms up and picks up moisture.’

    Read more:
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

  17. Comment from: Neville

    What a mess these labor mongrels have made of NSW. But leave these idiots in long enough anywhere and the result is always the same. Corruption and self seeking indulgence.

    But why did people keep voting for these swines? Even in Carr’s time they were obvious scum.

  18. Comment from: spangled drongo

    And gav’s very quiet today. Could it be that record low temp in Canberra or is he practicing wearing a CO2 mask?

  19. Comment from: gavin

    SD; given I don’t read Bolt, let’s catch my way on this coldest ever Dec ACT morning

    This week was full of wild winds so the carport, walkways and yards filled up with litter, mostly from eucalyptus street trees that have shed canopy suddenly after a couple of hot days. Cleaned up twice but this time our recycle depot is on fire again. Previous fire there was on the 16th Nov, spontaneous combustion both times in trashed mulch.

    Grass fire alert this season says they can out run us, 100M/5.5 sec. Got my old 4 stroke going over the verge till it finally kicked the dust for the last time. Had to walk one of my good 4′s through M high white oats next door, on a higher setting though. Thinking we may need to hold everything till after the w/e, I watered down my five bins ready for another load of tinder dry neighborhood organics.

    Re assembly of five vintage Bailey type hand planes filled the week in between.

    Took a little time out to hear the RN interviews this morning with guys co-ordinating new public photo coastal benchmarks/high tide survey, but been too busy since to follow up

  20. Comment from: spangled drongo

    Gav, grass-fire could always outrun me on a galloping horse. Just like Bannerman of the Dandenong. Top speed of the old Bedford was 60 mph across the downs fire plough tracks and sometimes that was barely enough.

    I’ve modified some of those wooden handplanes to make masts and spars. Even rail caps. You shape the underside and the blades to whatever you’re making. Works better than power tools and more versatile.

    Witness King Tides stopped writing to me when I asked if they had any data. I sent them my observations and after some correspondence it was obvious that it was all just propaganda and no facts. Good idea if they told the truth and stuck at it for another 50 years or so without drawing conclusions.

    Kiribati beating the drum at Doha.

    With nothing from glaciers and next to nothing from Ice Caps, where’s it gonna come from?

    As I have said, they’ve got a deck space problem, not a freeboard problem.

  21. Comment from: spangled drongo

    “As I have said, they’ve got a deck space problem, not a freeboard problem.”

    Historically speaking, that is. Here’s the blurb:

  22. Comment from: spangled drongo

    Who do you think you are?

    When the free world wants to emulate Western democracy because it thinks it is the best, why is it that our academics don’t want to tell our kids how it all came about?

    John Howard’s Hasluck lecture:

  23. Comment from: spangled drongo

    Looks like BkM didn’t pay much attention to those 125 scientists who called him out on his b/s.

    Also the Global Climate Fund with its shrinking billions in kitty has barely enough to pay staff let alone corrupt officials in the “sinking fund”.

    What a racket!

    Another great larf is the ACO2 catastros are gonna decide if they’ll let non-members of the new Kyoto invest in their worthless carbon market.

    I mean, we can’t have non-believers profiteering from our useless indulgences, hey, can we?

  24. Comment from: Neville

    More bi-polar delusion from the Gillard idiot.

    She’s as mad as a hatter, just look at the evidence. That’s everyone except Gav, he doesn’t like to read facts or evidence.

    First we’re told mitigating CAGW is the greatest moral challenge of our time.

    Next we’re told we must have a co2 tax to reduce emissions so “we can tackle CC and take action on CC.” Nearly every member of her barking mad govt has stated the above.

    Next we’re told by Garnaut and Gillard etc that forcing up our electricity prices is a good thing and will HELP to focus OZ on a clean energy future. Like I said she’s barking mad.

    Meantime while forcing OZ to pay heaps more for power her idiot govt is trying to increase exports of coal, iron ore and gas etc to anyone who’ll buy. All that extra emitted co2 evidently doesn’t count according to this bi-polar donkey.

    Ferguson her resources minister even wants Victoria to process their huge brown coal deposits so they too can export black coal.
    He claims this could be so large that the Latrobe valley could become another Pilbara. But all that extra co2 doesn’t matter either according to these two brained dummies.

    I could go on . Now this loon of a govt wants to actually reduce electricity prices because they can start to feel the political heat.

    Of course China, India etc power on regardless and our tiny reduction in co2 will not make a scrap of difference to co2 levels or the climate or the temp.
    All our wasted billions $ could be flushed down the drain forever and the difference to climate and temp would be exactly the same. Just ask GAIA brain Flannery.

  25. Comment from: Neville

    Monckton stirs things up in Doha and the warmist hysterics don’t like it.

    His warming rates make interesting reading as well.

  26. Comment from: Ian Thomson

    Thanks Debbie and Neville,
    It has now been announced in the local paper as well.
    Be interesting to see if it rates enough to get a prime time run.

  27. Comment from: el gordo

    Karoly is a fraudster.

    ‘According to David Karoly, an atmospheric scientist at Melbourne University and a lead author with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, global projections may not give a true picture of how we will experience global warming.

    “The problem we have is that, even if our best estimate is 4 degrees of warming this century, that is a global average and most of the globe is water,” he says. “Four degrees on average means probably 3 degrees over the oceans, and 5 or 6 degrees on average over the land.”

    Read more:

  28. Comment from: John Sayers

    Yes El Gordo – that article by The Fairfax Environment journalists is a disgrace. It was also published in the SMH.

  29. Comment from: el gordo

    Ben Cubby et al is a pathetic member of the warminista.

    More importantly, sea level rise has slowed.

  30. Comment from: Neville

    EG thanks for that info from notrickszone. Here’s an earlier post from that site in june 2012.
    At least they have used good sources, kinda beats a silly fool running around taking silly photos of coastline trying to disprove the real world measurements from tidal gauges and satellites.
    I repeat SLR until 2100 now shows a rise of just 17cm or 6.8 inches. This is well down on the metres estimated in the 1980s by USA IPA and then IPCC first report of 67mm and their 2001 report of 48.5cm and 2007 of 38.5cm. These quotes are all mid points.

  31. Comment from: Neville

    Gillard, Combet, Garnaut, Wong etc were lying a year ago and are still lying today.

    Only 15% of countries are delusional enough to think they can change the climate. Mainly OZ and the moronic, basket case EU.

  32. Comment from: Debbie

    The documentary ‘Muddied Waters’ was really good.
    A fabulous cross section of people and it was based on practical outcomes.
    When the politics are taken out of the equation, it is easy to see that a balance is achievable.
    The people from SA did a wonderful job of pointing out the estuarine history of the Coorong and the Lower Lakes and the futility of the ‘just add more water’ mantra.
    A particularly clear and simple explanation of the ecological damage that has been created by those hopelessly outdated barrages and the SE drainage works.
    The fact that sea water intrudes even when the river is in major flood was clearly explained with evidence from the telemetry sites.
    The idiocy of trying to put extra water on the back of natural flooding was also highlighted in a clear and sensible manner.

  33. Comment from: Ian Thomson

    Yes Debbie, it was very well done.
    I had been wondering, as I went to the concept meeting in Deni and old mate was a little into AGW.
    However, in this case , AGW just makes a stronger anti barrage case.
    Even I did not know that the Snowy nonsense was part of that insane Water Act and I thought I was onto all the machinations.

    I have to wonder what Sydney would be hearing if Louise had been elected instead of the Member we have when we don’t have a member. Bet they would know we exist.

  34. Comment from: spangled drongo

    Sorry I missed that Deb. It sounds like a little bit of sanity for a change. I’ll have to get the replay which will come up in a couple of days.

  35. Comment from: Debbie

    one day when you have some time to kill, the SHL licence is worth a read.
    They basically have the right to ‘rape & pillage’ downstream.
    I think the ability to produce hydro power is awesome and eminently sensible, but it needs some serious upgrading and a clearer focus on the ‘multiple benefits’ that could be achieved.
    The system (like those barrages at the bottom) has gone past its ‘use by’ date and because it wasn’t designed to do so, it is incapable of delivering sensible ‘environmental’ outcomes.
    The rules and regs are lacking the necessary flexibility that could prevent the waste of water. The insanity of 2009/10/11/12 that has seen water wasted out to sea via Hume & Blowering is a case in point.
    The SHL program/licence is somewhat disconnected from the reality of downstream impacts.
    The Coorong and Lower Lakes have also been cordoned off politically and disconnected from the reality of upstream.
    I think the documentary did a very good job of pointing out that disconnect problem in a clear and simple manner.
    It was also quite apolitical as it didn’t take ‘sides’, it just pointed out the issues and the practical constraints.

  36. Comment from: gavin

    EG & Nev; by your constant use of malicious rhetoric and reference to traitorous blog gossip you hope to deceive and disarm a broader public about the perils of rapid climate change. Notrickszone klaus is not supported anywhere, msm or science in your SL “decel” campaign. A quick look at sources would have shown there is no “de” SL acceleration even for hard line sceptic chatter on a decade or two.

    There is also no framework for a debate on SL change rates other than a hand full of very independent tide gauge records that come without overview or authorization. Notricks is at best an opinion forum like our OlO and other would be anti enviro journo grievance clubs.

    Melt water studies are going on everywhere and most importantly for us, right out in the Pacific

    “Drowning of coral reef associated with melting of glaciers”

    Get with the science on modern SLR

  37. Comment from: gavin

    Ooopps; a = A1 melt episode @ end of most recent ice age

  38. Comment from: el gordo

    Gavin those charts prove SL rise has stopped.

    ‘…you hope to deceive and disarm a broader public about the perils of rapid climate change.’

    That’s a bit silly, my aim is to debrief a brainwashed public and I have weather and climate change on my side.

  39. Comment from: gavin

    “those charts prove SL rise has stopped”

    EG; SL rise has not stopped. Either the charts are wrong or you can’t read them, which is it?

    “my aim is to debrief a brainwashed public” and so you give us no credit what so ever.

    “I have weather and climate change on my side” I say that’s a bit silly as SLr is still on the go and the climate becomes more and more harmful to life as we knew it. On our side of the Pacific Rim, that’s about bushfires, typhoons and floods. You can’t say what the benefits if any, are.

  40. Comment from: gavin

    From a Moti page where clownish conclusions match his grinning face

    What a twister!

  41. Comment from: spangled drongo

    yeah gav, and some serious SLR in Tuvalu.

    Every time they get an el Nino [global warming] the SL drops:

  42. Comment from: spangled drongo

    “EG; SL rise has not stopped. Either the charts are wrong or you can’t read them, which is it?”

    Just look out the window gav.

    SLs on the east coast have not risen AT ALL this century and in fact are lower than they were decades ago.

    Not just deceleration, that’s just a polite way of puting it, FALLING SLs. Just check the Pacific tide gauges.

    Here’s Kiribati:

  43. Comment from: Davefromweewaa

    Hi Debbie,
    I thought Muddied Waters was very good.I hope it gains enough traction to get a run at a more widely viewed time and place.Shame it didn’t go further north than Bourke but that would have needed more than 57 minutes.
    The point was made by a number of people that local knowledge from the productive farming sector has either not been sought or been ignored.There is no suprise in this.Unfortunately production (and therefore producers) are seen as the cause of the alleged problems.I’m afraid that the anti production people believe they hold the moral high ground.The only way to get better outcomes is for pro production people to displace anti production people on that moral high ground.
    Achieving that will involve reducing some high profile reputations in my opinion.
    Dave Shorter

  44. Comment from: Debbie

    what do you believe is causing the changes (either up or down) in SL?
    The graphs & charts only prove it is not static.
    What are ‘the perils of rapid climate change’?
    What do you think the ‘broader public’ needs to be ‘armed’ about?
    How would you ‘arm’ the broader public?

  45. Comment from: Neville

    Debbie you’re asking our Gav what he really means, or what his point is and that’s his big problem. He can’t say what he means or offer a solution for his claims.

    The facts are that we have a declining trend for SLR until 2100 and it’s now about 17 cm or 6.8 inches. This is lower than earlier trends by USA IPA and IPCC reports whether Gav understands this or not.

    Of course this could change either up or down but the IPCC’s models show that there is zero chance of dangerous SLR for the next 300 years from Greenland or Antarctica.

    It’s interesting to note that when the Vinther, Jones, Briffa etc temp study for Greenland was released in 2006 it showed that the highest temps were the 1930s and 1940s and highest year 1941.
    Since 2006 temps have increased slightly but there would be few people who understand or know about this Greenland temp record. But why hasn’t the MSM shown the graphs or mentioned this study.?

    Of course Alley’s holocene temp record for G/land shows that 1950 ( near highest for the last 100 years) was a very cool period for the last 10,000+ years. But LIA was one of the coldest periods.

  46. Comment from: Neville

    Here’s Richard Alley’s graph for Greenland temp over the holocene ending in 1950. Explain how the temps were so much higher during that long period shown by GISP2.
    We can definitely say it wasn’t co2 forcing, so what was it?

    Also here is that study of Greenland temps by Vinther, Jones, Briffa etc.

    This shows in 2006 that 1930s and 1940s were the warmest period and 1941 the warmest year. If you trust the temp record since 2006 they claim Gland temps are now equal to the 30s and 40s.

  47. Comment from: Neville

    Meanwhile the idiot Gillard govt has signed us up for more billions $ hand outs.

    Won’t change the climate , temp, or floods or droughts or bushfires, or GBR or MDB, or Kakadu or SLR or etc etc.
    But will cost billions for a guaranteed ZERO return on our money. What a clueless, barking mad mob of fools.

  48. Comment from: cohenite

    gav says:

    “traitorous blog gossip”

    That’s a new one.

    I see serial alarmist Matthew England has declared that the IPCC predictions about temperature have been vindicated:

    I simply have to pause at the outrageous disingenuity of this position which of course was run without quibble by our abc.

  49. Comment from: Neville

    The story of the finding and recovery of “Glacier Girl” is very interesting. After being left in 1942 on a glacier the P38 was then covered by 250 feet of ice.
    I wonder has anyone explained this enigma? Just asking.

  50. Comment from: Ian Thomson

    Easy one Neville,
    All the ice melted because of global warming and the plane was left sitting on a rock 250 feet downhill from where it landed.
    All that stuff about tunneling and hole boring was done in a Hollywood studio, ( rumoured to be the one used for the Moon landing ).
    The whole thing was financed by Big Oil and pedophile skeptics, to deceive and disarm the great unwashed about the perils of climate change.

    Seriously though, it is a fascinating story. Working down that hole would be unimaginable.

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