Sustainable Fishing, Marine Biology & Conservation

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2018 Satellite SPOT Tagging Trips

Objective:
Attach Satellite "SPOT" transmitters to mako and hammerhead sharks allowing researchers to track their movements.

All of our shark trips aboard the Fish Finder employ elements of the various shark research projects we’re involved with. But since May of 2013 we've also been running some very unique trips with the goal of attaching SPOT (Smart Position and Temperature) tags to sharks. This type of tag is bolted onto the shark's dorsal fin and are the same type used by the OCEARCH team when they tag great whites and other species from the lift platform off the side of their vessel.

Shark researchers from the Guy Harvey Research Institute, Save Our Seas Shark Center at NOVA Southeastern University Oceanographic Center, and the University of Rhode Island direct this tagging operation, Captain Sampson and his first mate are in charge of the fishing-end of the project, while crew-members (from the public) are invited to join us to share the duties of anglers, assistants, and sponsors.

Similar to our usual Offshore Shark trips, these research trips are full day adventures that have us 25-35 miles offshore where we set-up a chum slick and deploy shark baits on standard sport fishing tackle. When a shark is hooked one of the crew members will fight it to the boat where, if it is to be tagged, it will be brought aboard so that the SPOT tag can be carefully attached and a few other procedures performed before release.

This has proven to be a very unique tracking project that is yielding valuable information about the biology, habits, travel routes, and catch rates of mako and hammerhead sharks. It is also a rare opportunity for the public to not only sponsor but also to take an active role in important studies being conducted by world-renowned shark researchers using cutting edge technology.

Since 2013 we've been successful in placing SPOT tags on 36 shortfin makos, 6 smooth hammerheads, and one common thresher. We plan to continue offering the public the opportunity to join us on these trips as angler/helper/sponsors in 2018. Interested participants should call or email to reserve a place on the boat.

2018 SPOT tagging trips:
May 29, 30, 31
June 1, 2
6:am - 6:pm
Price - $350/person (price includes tip for the mate)


Anyone can follow the tracks of the sharks we've SPOT tagged off Ocean City Maryland from the link below. From the link you'll see a chart of the Atlantic. On the right side of that screen you can select the sharks you wish to track:

http://www.nova.edu/~johnmatt/makosharks.htm 

More SPOT Tag information:

http://www.coml.org/edu/tech/study/spot1.htm