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Tagging Video

Research/Tagging/Procedures

  • In the 1980's,the development of satellite telemetry allowed the first in-depth studies of animal movement patterns.
  • Certain techniques such as telemetry and large-scale tagging have been used to identify some migratory behaviors and habitats
    of sturgeon.
  • Uniquely coded Passive Integrated Transponder (PIT) tags are used for individual identification experiments. These tags are
    implanted internally underneath the skin and have a high retention rate.
  • Carlin tags are external tags that are visible to all observers and can be used for individual identification. On each tag
    there is an individual fish identification number that helps in determining if the fish has been captured before.
  • Sonic transmitters can monitor sub-adult and adult sturgeon migration patterns. These tags are generally attached to the sturgeon
    by a soft wire to a bony plate forward on the dorsal fin.
  • Acoustic tags track individual movements with systems that can last over several years. These tags can transmit depth and temperature
    information, and are often placed under the sturgeon's skin layer through an incision that is then closed up with stitches.
  • Satellite tags are attached to the sturgeon and collect data on sturgeon movements. The tag will eventually release from the fish and
    float up to the surface. When the tag reaches the surface, it sends all of its data to satellites. Researchers are then able to
    download all of this information.
  • Juvenile/sub-adults sturgeon can be collected using trawl nets and gill nets.
  • Anchored gill nets are the most common gear type used to collect sturgeon. They are less expensive, more easily mastered by staff, and
    usable from small boats.
  • Every time an Atlantic sturgeon is captured, researchers record specific information, such as the date and time of capture, latitude,
    longitude, mesh size of net, source of capture, length, weight, and presence of any injuries.
  • A section of the bony fin ray in front of one of the fins can be taken to estimate the age of the fish.