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Blackfin Tuna Tagging Project

Nova Southeastern University's Oceanographic Center Fisheries Research Lab is conducting a satellite tagging study on blackfin tuna. We are looking for fishermen in the South Florida and Keys area who are currently fishing for these fish.

We recently received a donation of 10 pop-up satellite archival tags from a manufacturer; their reason for the donation is that the batteries do not have much of a shelf life left and they were looking for someone who could deploy them soon (within the next several weeks). After talking with some local fishermen and considering the time of the year and what would make an appropriate study species, we've chosen blackfin tuna. The tuna need to be about 60 cm FL (approx 15 lbs) to carry the tag.

We need to get these tags deployed on blackfin tuna within the next several weeks. We understand this time of year is very busy, however we are available any day of the week as long as we get about a 24 hour notice, we should be able to make the trip. It is only necessary for one of us to come along, so if you're planning a charter trip or a personal trip and have space for one more, we'd appreciate the ride. We're looking for fishermen who have all the necessary fishing equipment and are using standard methods for targeting tuna. We have all the scientific equipment. We'll need help from the crew to bring the fish onboard and hold it down while we insert the tag and take measurements. The entire time the fish is out of the water should not exceed 2 minutes.

As with projects being run by a university, there is some paperwork involved. You will need to fill out a cover letter and W9 and provide us with a copy of your vessel's registration, insurance, and permit. All U.S. Coast Guard safety requirements, necessary emergency equipment, and all fishing-related permits must be kept current while participating. There may be an option to consider the expenses incurred while participating in this project as a donation on your annual taxes. You would have to speak directly to our administrative personnel in charge of such things to get all the necessary information. Their information will be provided upon request.

Interested parties will please direct questions and comments to Jenny Fenton at [email protected] or Dave Kerstetter at [email protected].

Replies

  • Got TA GoGot TA Go Posts: 2,608 Captain
    Where are you based out of? I can probably put something together. Are you looking to stick all 10 tags the same day or are you looking to spread them out?

    Rob
    www.gottagofishinginkeywest.com


    Hero's Don't Wear Capes....They Wear Dog Tags.
  • tunataggertunatagger Posts: 2 Greenhorn
    We are based out of Fort Lauderdale, but we can travel to the Keys if necessary. We are looking to deploy all 10 as soon as possible. If they are all out in one trip, that would be great, but we will do as many trips necessary to get all 10 tags deployed.
  • Got TA GoGot TA Go Posts: 2,608 Captain
    I'll shoot you a E-Mail, but sticking them won't be a problem once the water cools.

    Right now we've got a few schools passing through here and there...If you can wait a couple of weeks we can probably stick all 10 in a single trip between the hours of 4-6 pm.

    Rob
    www.gottagofishinginkeywest.com


    Hero's Don't Wear Capes....They Wear Dog Tags.
  • GT FishGT Fish Posts: 9,448 Officer
    May is your best month for fish in the 15-30lb range in Boca..
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  • Fishin Blue WaterFishin Blue Water Posts: 219 Deckhand
    I'm not sure you would want to make a trip up north but you wouldn't have a problem catching 10 15+lb blackfin in NE FL this time of year. I don't know much about the keys but I believe that the blackfin in your area run relatively small this time of year.
  • Got TA GoGot TA Go Posts: 2,608 Captain
    I don't know much about the keys but I believe that the blackfin in your area run relatively small this time of year.

    FBW...As soon as we get the cooler water to move in, we can pretty consistantly run 6 miles from the dock and catch'em in the 12-25lb range. Normally we just do it for fun since it's a late evening thing and only goes for a couple of hours (4-6pm, most catching starts around 4:30), and then we can come back to the dock for dinner. But that run will last for a few weeks.

    Early spring, we can run out to the Tortugas and catch'em from 20-40lbs...but that's a LONG way to go and makes for a full day.

    The ones we catch out front aren't record breakers, but since we're just playing around we do it on light tackle (as low as 8lb). We normally only keep 1 or 2 for dinner. Seemed to fit his bill since we're just C&R (mostly) and having fun.

    Rob
    www.gottagofishinginkeywest.com


    Hero's Don't Wear Capes....They Wear Dog Tags.
  • Fishin Blue WaterFishin Blue Water Posts: 219 Deckhand
    Just trying to offer a helping hand. If they can get 'em in the keys large enough to tag that is where I would go. Much shorter drive and run.

    I fished out of Lake Worth and St. Lucie inlets while in college and know that the ones we caught this time of year were usually well under 15lbs. That is the only reason I said anything at all.
  • Got TA GoGot TA Go Posts: 2,608 Captain
    Just trying to offer a helping hand. If they can get 'em in the keys large enough to tag that is where I would go. Much shorter drive and run.

    I fished out of Lake Worth and St. Lucie inlets while in college and know that the ones we caught this time of year were usually well under 15lbs. That is the only reason I said anything at all.

    Please do help, and you're right on the money. The ones we have right now are, for the most part, sub 10lbers and there's not enough to even "target" them. We've still got water in the 81 degree range which is too hot for our bigger ones.

    If I hear of any target sized ones being caught anywhere in the Keys, I'll let him know. And if you hear of any on the mainland, please do the same. I think we're still a couple of cold fronts away from the Lower Keys even being an option. :wink

    Rob
    www.gottagofishinginkeywest.com


    Hero's Don't Wear Capes....They Wear Dog Tags.
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