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PIFG Tags 3000 Oʻio!

December 28, 2012

Since starting in 2010 with support from a NOAA Saltonstall-Kennedy grant, in just 16 months the Pacific Islands Fisheries Group (PIFG) Oʻio Tagging Project Team has successfully reached their goal of tagging 3000 oʻio. The approach used in this project has not likely been used before for oʻio or bonefish and is unheard of in the fisheries research community. PIFG is not aware of anyone tracking, capturing, and containing large schools of oʻio for mass tagging using this fishing method. The oʻio were tagged in just four trips with the help of dedicated Waianae commercial fisherman, Carl Jellings. The final tagging trip on July 22, 2012 resulted in a school of 1100 fish being captured, held and tagged. PIFG sends a very big Mahalo out to Mr. Jellings. Without his expertise, the success of this project would not have been possible.

PIFG's success in deploying the tags has already yielded valuable knowledge and data with much more expected to come as recaptures continue to be reported. To date, 60 recaptures have been reported with some indicating fish having travelled over 10 miles away from their tag site.

If you catch an oʻio with a green tag in it, please call the telephone number on the tag to report valuable data, including the tag number, date captured, length, weight of the fish, general location of capture, and your contact info. In return you will receive a t-shirt featuring artwork by the late artist and fisherman, Mike Sakamoto.

Brian Funai
PIFG Oʻio Tagging Project