A Carleton University aggregation is acquisitive to put identification tags on 10,000 angle in the Rideau system, a abiding activity to accept breadth angle travel. Alice Abrams / Postmedia
Postmedia’s accepted Science of Summer alternation is back, in its accepted on-again, off-again way. Today Tom Spears looks at a Carleton University aggregation that is acquisitive to put identification tags on 10,000 angle in the Rideau system, a abiding activity to accept breadth angle travel.
It takes alone three or four abnormal to tag a fish, adhering a tiny dejected ID characterization with a little gun that can additionally put amount tags on clothing.
But aboriginal you accept to t a fish. That takes longer.
Which is why Steven Cooke wants your help, if you like fishing. He has been absolution tagged angle to abstraction breadth they travel, and is allurement bounded anglers to alarm in and abode any tags they balance from their catch.
Each tag has the Cooke lab’s buzz cardinal and email address. Bodies who buzz in are asked about their fish’s breadth and concrete condition, and they are entered in a draw for $200 account of fishing gear.
This is a lot like amalgamation birds, says Cooke, who holds a Canada Analysis Chair in angle anatomy and attention physiology. But with best birds, advice alone comes aback if a scientist catches a previously-banded bird.
With fish, there are a lot added catches, and anglers acquaint the stories.
“The advice tells us back they bent it, breadth they bent it. Best bodies admeasurement their angle so we get an abstraction of size,” he said this week.
“If we tagged a angle in Big Rideau Lake, was it recaptured in Big Rideau? Was it recaptured in an adjoining river or the canal? So it allows us to get at questions about how angle are or are not affective through the locks system,” a catechism that interests Parks Canada, abettor of the locks.
After all the centuries that bodies accept gone fishing, angle movement is still a mystery. Cooke says his abstraction has two appropriate points: He will absolution bags of angle (eventually) and get a ample aggregate of data; and it involves the public.
So, about communicable those fish: Biologists cheat. They accelerate an electric shock into the water, beauteous angle briefly. The scientist aloof scoops them up in a net.
But the Cooke aggregation has additionally been afterward fishing tournaments, tagging whatever alive angle the contestants accompany in.
“If we can go to a clash and tag 200 or 300 developed largemouth and smallmouth bass in two hours, that would booty my analysis aggregation about a ages to do the same,” he said.
After one ages they accept tagged about 1,000 fish. “We’ve been alive alongside some of the bass tournaments on Newboro Lake and Big Rideau Lake. We are activity to be alive with Muskies Canada in the Ottawa area.”
They are tagging bass, walleye, muskelunge, pike, bluegill and pumpkinseeds. “Bass will alive about 20 years,” he said. Ample muskie can alive alike longer.
Part of the ambition is artlessly to accept how breed alive and interact. “Parks Canada is absorbed in compassionate how their locks either act as openings for these angle to move through, or absolutely bind movement.
“Next year … we will booty some angle that we t beneath a lock and absolution them above,” and carnality versa. They will additionally absolution some central a lock and watch which way the angle go.
They buy the tagging accoutrements from t stores. These inject a T-shaped ballast in the fish’s side. There’s a Facebook video assuming the action and allurement bodies to abode the tags.
Parks Canada and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Analysis Council are acknowledging the work.
It will booty years to absolution 10,000 fish, and alike best to accumulate the data. Bodies will be communicable these angle for a continued time.
“It’s not absurd that into my retirement this will accommodate data,” Cooke said.
We had to ask: Breadth can we buy an electric shock apparatus that catches lots of fish?
Cooke: “You can’t.”
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