The restoration of fish habitat and increased data collection of “citizen scientists” through past programs like the Bay Ronquille inshore artificial reef and TAG Louisiana allowed for the public’s direct participation in education and conservation. With new advances in technology, citizen scientists have more availability to this data and the ability to share their experiences than ever before. These same advances in technology have provided researchers with new ways to begin gathering data as well. Now anglers can "Fish with a Purpose”!
Once again RFRI will lead the way with novel ideas continuing to leave a legacy of leadership.
Today’s angler is surrounded by high tech options from the GPS in the truck and boat to computer-chipped fishing reels. Even the ice chest can notify your smartphone when the drinks get cold! It begs the question, why is federal recreational fishing data collection in the stone age, using post cards to collect information instead of at least electronic saltwater registry to help managers engage with anglers? At team of experts has joined forces to move recreational fisheries data collection into the 22nd Century, click here to learn more.
The Tag Program has been a great resource for gathering important and useful data from Anglers. We have made great progress last year and are working to continue improving the application and add new features for anglers and reports for administrators. These updates are essential to provide Anglers with an enjoyable user experience so they can continue to provide us more data to improve understanding of marine sport fish movements, patters of habitat use and population dynamics. Click here to go to the TAG Louisiana Page or click this to see the latest TAG improvements.
Once again RFRI will lead the way with an innovative Fishing Tournament Demonstrator using the most advanced technology available in 2021 and full tournament in 2022. This catch and release tournament will run concurrent with Louisiana’s recreational red snapper season. Anglers will be able fish anywhere in Louisiana state waters or the Federal waters off of Louisiana during the open recreational red snapper season. All they have to Catch Tag and Win. No really after tagging the fish they simply take a photo. This will help us collect valuable info on Red Snapper by tagging and collecting fin clips. Descending devices will be supplied as we educate anglers on their benefits. Tag returns will be combined with estimates of catch and effort from participating fishers to estimate red snapper abundance. Fin clips will allow estimates of Effective Population Size or the number of individuals that effectively participate in producing the next generation. Why is this important? It is crucial in conservation biology or building the best management program for a particular species. Click here and watch the TAG IT Tournament develop and to get the latest details.
To ensure this important information is developed and distributed to user groups, additional funding is necessary. As the previous programs in “Our History” have demonstrated, RFRI is capable of spearheading complex data collection efforts and providing anglers information that will help them understand their important role as a recreational angler and their responsibility as a conservationist of the resource.