Earlier this year we under took a pilot study capturing and releasing many of our popular inshore species. Each fish was accurately measured, fitted with a serial numbered ID tag, photographed and then released. It was important for our results to be productive and that the fish we tagged were handled and tagged in a way that does not alter their natural behaviour. The details collected included: date, species, tag number, release location, longitude, latitude, water depth, fish fork length, sea surface temperature and angler details. Species included in the pilot study were:
Snapper ( Chrysopphrys auratus), Trevally (Pseodocaranax georgianus), Kahawai (Arripis trutta),
Gurnard (Chelidonichthys kumu), Kingfish (Seriola lalandi), Tope (Galeorhinus galeus), and
Tarakihi (Nemadactylus macropterus).
Our first recapture from this pilot study was a snapper, tag number T047, caught during a commercial trawl made between 70-82m depth off Taranaki. The fish measured a fork length of 38cm.
This fish was originally tagged by Sue Tindale on the 2nd of April 2018 while fishing the Omokoiti flats, Kaipara harbour. It was released at a depth of 2.8m and measured a fork length (tip of nose to v of tail) of 36cm.
In the 41 days at large the snapper travelled a distance of in excess of 165 nautical miles (305km).
Tagging has long been a simple tool to track seasonal movements preferred habitat & growth of marine species and has been used in over 100 countries worldwide. Here in NZ there is a long running Big Gamefish tagging programme covering pelagic visitors but strangely there has been minimal tagging research carried out on our most common resident inshore fish species other than kingfish and a couple of short term tagging projects many years ago.
As with all research projects it is imperative to collect accurate information. We ask that you all keep an eye out for tagged fish while out fishing. If you find one Please record and forward the following capture details;
. tag number
. recapture location
. latitude and longitude
. fork length
. and your details.
We would also like any comments you would like to add and a photo or two if possible for promotional use. Fish Tag Recovery forms are also available to download on line.
As recreational anglers we always have the option of releasing fish. Before releasing a tagged fish please record the same details above with a note that the fish was released live and leave the original tag in place.
The running of citizen science programs and assisting in many research projects is a major undertaking. So far there has been a lot of interest from anglers, marine biology students, research institutions and the public following our initial pilot study, therefore this program has been expanded to include all inshore species.
Tagging kits and additional tags are available to anyone interested in participating in the program. These can be purchased by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org .
Projects like this would not be possible without the support of a wide range of organisations, sponsors and volunteers so we welcome any additional contributions
Regular updates will be posted on the Tindale Marine Research Charitable Trust Facebook page and on our website science section.
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