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DEVELOPMENT OF STANDARDIZED SURGICAL PROCEDURES FOR THE IMPLANTATION OF ELECTRONIC TAGS IN KEY GREAT LAKES TELEOST FISHES

In the coming years biotelemetry techniques will be used   in a large number of projects supported by the GLFC intended to   study the spatial ecology and survival of a variety of fish species   in the Great Lakes.  The majority of telemetry studies will be long-  term and will therefore require the surgical implantation of tags.    As such, the premise of this proposal is that there is an immediate   and pressing need to develop a suite of best surgical practices for   use in the surgical tagging of key Great Lakes fish.  In particular,   there is a need for protocols that have been designed to be relevant   to field settings (e.g., on a boat, dock, or shoreline) where most   tagging would occur (rather than in the lab).  By developing   standardized techniques it will be possible to ensure that data   collected in different studies and across different years will be   comparable.  Beyond the benefits afforded by being able to conduct   comparative analyses, any attempts to refine tagging techniques will   also improve the quality of the data being collected as a tenet of   all tagging studies is that the presence of the tag or the tagging   procedure do not significantly alter the behaviour, survival,   physiology, growth, health or fitness of tagged fish relative to   untagged conspecifics.  Management decisions based on unreliable   mortality estimates or habitat associations could lead to costly   mistakes.  Our overall objective is to provide standardized   resources to telemetry practitioners that will lead to improved   surgical outcomes for fish implanted with electronic tags.  To   achieve the objective we propose to do the following:   1. review the scientific literature related to fish surgery relevant   to key species in the Great Lakes; 2. survey researchers with   experience conducting fish surgeries on a given species to identify   problems and opportunities; 3.  identify research needs or other   uncertainties for each species; 4. synthesize available information   to propose standardized surgical techniques for each species   recognizing that there may still be significant uncertainties that   we identify; 5. generate a final report and several short videos   that serve as a resource for those embarking on studies that require   the surgical implantation of electronic tags in fish.

Status
In progress
Type
Project
Start Date
End Date
Scope of Study
Literature / Existing Data
Scale of Phenomena
Organism
Resource Management
Fisheries
Annex Numbers
Surveillance and Monitoring

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Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Region.