Fish tagging experiments have been conducted in Icelandic waters since early twentieth century. These tagging experiments have been carried out on several commercial fish stocks mainly: cod (/Gadus morhua/ L.), haddock (/Melanogrammus aeglefinus/), herring (/Clupea harengus/), plaice (/Pleuronectes platessa/), saithe (/Pollachius virens/), wolfish (/Anarhichas lupus/), and to lesser degree: deep-sea redfish (Sebastes mentella), lumpsucker (/Cyclopterus lumpus/), halibut (/Hippoglossus hippoglossus/), dab (/Limanda limanda/), witch (/Glyptocephalus cynoglossus/), anglerfish or monkfish (/Lophius piscadorius/) and rough dab (/Hippoglossoides platessoides/). Some invertebrates have also been tagged like Norway lobster (/Nephrops norvegicus/), deep water shrimp (/Pandalus borealis/) and Iceland scallop (/Chlamys islandica/).

Until 1994 only so called conventional tags were used of various types that have in common that they have identification letters and numbers (Thorsteinsson et al, 2002). Ftrom 1995 the Marine Research Institute is also using electronic tags or Data Storage Tags (DSTs). These are capsules with sensors and memory chips for recording and storing environmental data. The fundamental data that has been collected is ambient temperature and depth of the fish. The development of this technology has been very fast in the last decade and more sensors have been developed such as salinity, tilt, sound � and more (www.star-oddi.com). Fish that have been tagged by DST, by MRI in fisheries research are: cod, saithe, plaice, Greenland halibut, haddock, deep-sea redfish and anglerfish.

Where as the conventional tagging methods yield only data that is collected at release and recapture the use of electronic tags give the additional possibility of data collection in the period between release and recapture. This does not mean that conventional tags are obsolete. Depending on purpose of tagging experiments one could use either
conventional tags, electronic devices or both in combinations. Tagging experiments have mostly been conducted to assess or investigate various aspects of population biology such as abundance, distribution, behaviour, mortality, growth, population structure and for monitoring stocks. The addition of electronic technology has increased research potential in tagging experiments beyond imagination.

Tagging methods

Fish tags returned

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