TAG Louisiana History
It was with great vision that in 1987 Maumus “Timau” Claveier with CCA Louisiana created a redfish tagging program, the Cooperative Marine Sport Fish Tagging Program. By 1995 it was the nation’s premiere tagging program with over 200 volunteer anglers tagging 10,000 fish a year. However, after these initial successes the program slowly lost its momentum and focus.
In 1999 the RFRI, through its leadership & partnership building began to nurture this program back to and beyond its early successes. Today, thanks to the RFRI’s nearly two decades of support and rebranding, as it’s known today “TAG Louisiana (TAG)” introduces anglers to a more qualitative or “scientific” method that yields data to better understand the unique life histories of fish, it provides information that is difficult, often impossible, and expensive to obtain and was refocused to employ and educate anglers “Citizen Scientist” about the importance and need for management and conservation through their participation.
Since 2018 RFRI redefined TAG through its “Citizen Scientist” initiative and its new “Fish with a Propose” resolve! Some of the major advancements included a totally redesigned website and data management system and a 365 - 24/7 automated answering service.
RFRI has played different rolls and levels of involvement since 1999; however most recently, during 2020, COVID forced CCA to cut back on staffing and services due to lost fundraising opportunities. To that end the RFRI has been once again asked to administer TAG. RFRI willingly accepted this challenge and together with the AZBY Fund continued to support and manage TAG Louisiana.
Go to the following link to see the RFRI’s accomplishments and future with TAG
TAG Louisiana Benefits
Fish tagging, which involves attaching identification markers or devices to fish, has several benefits and plays a crucial role in fisheries management and scientific research. Here are some of the key advantages of fish tagging:
Population assessment: Tagging fish allows scientists and fisheries managers to estimate population size, abundance, and distribution. By tracking tagged individuals, researchers can collect data on fish movement patterns, habitat use, and migration routes. This information helps in understanding the overall health and dynamics of fish populations.
Stock management: Fish tagging provides valuable data for fisheries management. It helps determine fishing quotas, catch limits, and conservation measures. By studying the growth rates, survival rates, and movement patterns of tagged fish, managers can make informed decisions to ensure sustainable fishing practices and prevent overfishing.
Migration patterns and habitat use: Tagging studies provide insights into fish migration patterns, including timing, routes, and destinations. This information is crucial for understanding fish behavior, reproductive strategies, and habitat preferences. It helps identify critical spawning grounds, nursery areas, and feeding grounds, which are essential for conservation and habitat protection efforts.
Ecosystem dynamics: Fish are important components of aquatic ecosystems, and their movements and interactions have cascading effects on the entire ecosystem. Tagging studies allow scientists to examine predator-prey relationships, food web dynamics, and the ecological roles of different fish species. This knowledge contributes to a better understanding of ecosystem health and can guide conservation and restoration initiatives.
Collaboration and data sharing: Tagging programs often involve collaboration among researchers, conservation organizations, and fishing communities. By sharing data and collaborating on tagging efforts, scientists can gain a broader understanding of fish populations, which is vital for effective management and conservation strategies.
Public engagement and education: Fish tagging programs can engage the public and raise awareness about fisheries and conservation issues. Citizen science initiatives involving volunteer anglers or community members can contribute to tagging efforts, promoting public participation and fostering a sense of stewardship for fish populations and their habitats.
Overall, fish tagging provides valuable data for fisheries management, conservation efforts, and scientific research. It helps ensure the sustainability of fish populations, protects habitats, and contributes to our understanding of aquatic ecosystems.