NOAA Seeking Volunteers in Tagging Tuna

BOSTON – The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is looking for help in tagging tuna.

The Atlantic Ocean Tropical Tuna Tagging Program was established by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas in 2015 to study key aspects of bigeye, skipjack, and yellowfin tuna in the Atlantic Ocean.

As part of the AOTTP, Dr. Walt Golet from the University of Maine and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute will be working with colleagues at the New England Aquarium, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, University of Miami, and NOAA Fisheries to deploy 5,000 conventional tags on tuna in the western North Atlantic Ocean.

The effort will stretch from Canada to Venezuela and also includes the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean.

Those interested in participating in the AOTTP project and would like to volunteer to tag bigeye, skipjack, and yellowfin tuna, can contact Dr. Walt Golet at walter.golet@maine.edu.

NOAA says every fish tagged will give participants a chance to win one of 20 individual cash prizes, totaling more than $39,000, to be awarded at the end of the project.

The AOTTP aims to partner with scientists and commercial and recreational tuna fishermen over a five-year period to tag at least 120,000 tropical tuna with conventional or electronic tags throughout the Atlantic.

The data generated from these tags will be essential in improving understanding of the species, which will enhance fisheries management and promote sustainability of the stocks.

By TIM DUNN, CapeCod.com News Center

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