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Side Scanning Fish Finder


Tim Smith
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One of the groups I work with is an organization in Belize Central America called "Friends of Nature". We are expanding our lagoon monitoring program and are looking for sampling gear. One thing we are hoping to try is a monitoring program for Morelet's and American crocodiles and the West Indian Manatee...and something we hope to try out is a side-scanning fish finder that can work in water 5- 6' deep or less.

 

If anyone has any experience with those devices, I would be interested to know about them (range, quality of read-out etc.). We would be looking for BIG targets (manatee exceed 500 lbs, most of our crocs would be in the 3-6 foot range and often resting on the bottom). There are some very expensive units that do that kind of work, but they don't generally work in shallow water and we can't afford them anyway. We are hoping the low-end units might do a good enough job for monitoring purposes.

 

We are also interested in picking up a good used unit cheap (or even donated...Friends of Nature is not for profit). PMs are welcome, but I thought this might make for an interesting discussion so I posted it here.

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Guest rich mc

i never was a big believer in the side finder .maybe in deep lake michigan and not for shallow water. shabbona has fish cribs that rise to 8ft out of12ft of water.it didnt help. rich

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Thanks Rich and Eric.

 

I've talked to the high end manufacturers and they seem to be shy of shallow water. It seems to be the low end guys who are willing to make the claims. I know there was a hummingbird unit that claimed to work in shallow water...it's just not clear to me how valid those claims are.

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  • 2 weeks later...

tim, what model do you have. we have one at our office. It kicks ass from what i've seen. In 10ft of water you can see a log laying on the bottom. I can get you the model number on monday if you email me. I've played with our sidescan sonar and you can see fish hangin by the bottom, you could definately see a 1000lb critter hangin out down there.

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hey tim...disregard the PM...I remember this now, it's been a while. I think it would be useful for that purpose. when are you leaving...I may have time to play with ours and see if I can pick up a log in less than 2m...Later

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if you wanna give my boss a call and tell him what a great opportunity it would be for me to come down there on fws dollars...Go ahead...I might be dangerous though. I've always wanted to handle an alligator. I'll be out with the guy tomorrow who's got the sidescan sonar on his WORKboat-I'll try and remember to bring the head unit with! This isn't fun stuff so I emphasize the WORK part.

Later

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