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Evaluating light-based geolocation for estimating demersal fish movements in high latitudes

January 1, 2006

We evaluated light-based geolocation estimates from pop-up satellite tags in high latitudes because some of the largest fisheries in the world are in areas where this technique has not been assessed. Daily longitude and latitude were estimated by using two Wildlife Computers software programs: 1) Argos Message Processor (AMP), which summarizes light intensity data transmitted to satellites, and 2) Time Series Processor (TSP), which uses more detailed data obtained from retrieved tags. Three experiments were conducted in the northern Gulf of Alaska using tags placed on 1) Pacific halibut in outdoor aquaria, 2) a fixed mooring line at various depths and 3) wild Pacific halibut. TSP performed better than AMP because the percentage of days with geolocation estimates was greater and the mean error magnitude and bias were smaller for TSP and increased with depth for both programs; however, latitude errors were much greater than longitude errors at all depths. Light-based geolocation enabled us to discern basin-scale movements and showed that the Pacific halibut in our study remained within the Gulf of Alaska. We conclude that this technique provides a feasible method for inferring large-scale population structure for demersal fishes in high latitudes. 

Citation Information

Publication Year 2006
Title Evaluating light-based geolocation for estimating demersal fish movements in high latitudes
Authors Andrew C. Seitz, Brenda L. Norcross, Derek Wilson, Jennifer L. Nielsen
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Fishery Bulletin
Index ID 70175722
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Alaska Science Center