Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Tracking Fish Easier, Quicker, Safer with New Injectable Device

30.01.2015

Beeping tag gathers data to help make dams more fish-friendly

Fish no longer need to go under the knife to help researchers understand exactly how they swim through hydroelectric dams, thanks to a new injectable tracking device described today in the journal Scientific Reports.


Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s new injectable acoustic fish-tracking tag is so small it can be inserted into a fish with a syringe. The new tag is three times lighter than earlier versions, making it safer for fish and able to more accurately record fish passage through dams.

The new injectable acoustic fish tag allows researchers to safely and quickly insert the small device into young fish with a syringe similar to those used to treat humans. Injecting the tag, instead of surgically inserting it as earlier versions required, is less invasive and enables fish to heal faster, which can also provide more reliable information about fish behavior.

“Our new tag essentially allows fish to undergo a quick outpatient procedure,” said Zhiqun “Daniel” Deng, a scientist at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. “Tags have been used to track and evaluate fish movement for decades, but this is the first acoustic transmitter that can be inserted with a simple needle injection.”

... more about:
»Fish »JSATS »Laboratory »PNNL »Tracking »acoustic »juvenile

Salmon sound system

PNNL began developing its Juvenile Salmon Acoustic Telemetry System, also known as JSATS, in 2001 at the request of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Portland District, which operates several dams in the Pacific Northwest. That system – which includes tags, sound receivers and software – was initially designed to provide a more accurate picture of how young salmon migrate from their birthplace in Columbia River Basin waters to the open Pacific Ocean. The system’s use has since expanded to other fish species, for a variety of waterpower structures, and beyond the Northwest, including in California, Australia and Brazil.

Tags release quiet beeps that are picked up by receivers placed in rivers, lakes and other water bodies as tagged fish swim by. Receiver data helps researchers map out the precise 3-D location of each fish and determine if fish are injured during their travels. That information can help make dams more fish-friendly by revising their operations or altering their physical structure. Hundreds of thousands of young fish have been studied with JSATS tags over the years.

Though the earlier JSATS tag provided a very detailed picture of fish migration, researchers worried that the mere presence of their tag – which was about three times heavier in 2007 than today’s injectable tag – could alter fish behavior and make tag-gathered data less reliable for small fish. The earlier tags were also large enough to require surgery, with technicians creating a small incision into each anesthetized fish, manually inserting tags and hand-stitching incisions closed. Studies showed surgically tagged fish might not behave the same as untagged fish if the ratio of the tag weight to fish weight is too big. As a result, PNNL staff worked to make a progressively smaller and lighter tag, with the eventual goal of being able to inject their tag with a syringe.

"Minimizing the impact dams have on fish requires us to study and understand how changes at dams affect their behavior and survival. A critical assumption of any research is that the animals being studied represent their entire population," said M. Brad Eppard, a fisheries biologist with the Portland District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and a co-author on the paper. "The new injectable tag helps us ensure the individual fish we study represent the fish in the Federal Columbia River Power System by allowing smaller-sized fish to be tagged."

Tricked-out tags

PNNL’s new injectable tag is about as big as two grains of rice placed next to each other lengthwise. It weighs just 217 milligrams when dry, is 15 millimeters long and 3.38 millimeters in diameter. Half of the cylindrical tag contains a tiny 3-volt battery. The other half consists of a miniature circuit board and a transducer, which makes the tag’s beeping noise. New features include the addition of a temperature sensor and the ability to adjust sound levels, release two unique tracking codes alternatively, and program the tag to be silent for a pre-determined amount of time.

The injectable tag can intermittently beep as often as every 0.4 seconds, or less frequently, depending on a study’s particular needs. Thanks to the new tag’s powerful battery, lab tests showed the tag can release sound for an average of 120 days when beeps are sent every three seconds. In comparison, PNNL’s previous tag only lasted 23 days under the same conditions.

Inserting the new tag into fish also takes substantially less time than the previous version. Injecting the tag with a syringe takes just 20 seconds, while the old tag’s surgery required at least two minutes. The shorter period reduces the cost of fish-tagging studies, as the manual labor of handling fish and inserting tags is the most expensive part of these studies.

Fishing for the right size

During the summer of 2013, about 700 juvenile salmon implanted with the injectable tag were released in the Snake River in Washington state. Initial results indicated survival was higher in fish carrying the injectable tag than those with the older tag. Research is ongoing to fully evaluate how the tags affect fish and to determine the smallest fish that is suitable for safe injectable tagging.

PNNL intends to transfer the new injectable tag to a commercial vendor that will independently manufacture and sell it. Discussions are ongoing with several companies that have expressed interest in licensing the technology.

Deng and his team are continually working to improve their fish tag. An even smaller tag is being developed for juvenile eels and lamprey, and a longer-lasting tag was made for juvenile sturgeon last year.

REFERENCE: Z.D. Deng, T.J. Carlson, H. Li, J. Xiao, M.J. Myjak, J.Lu, J.J. Martinez, C.M. Woodley, M.A. Weiland, M.B. Eppard, “An injectable acoustic transmitter for juvenile salmon,” Scientific Reports, Jan. 29, 2015, DOI: 10.1038/srep08111, http://www.nature.com/srep/2015/150129/srep08111/full/srep08111.html 

Interdisciplinary teams at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory address many of America's most pressing issues in energy, the environment and national security through advances in basic and applied science. Founded in 1965, PNNL employs 4,300 staff and has an annual budget of more than $1 billion. It is managed by Battelle for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. As the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information on PNNL, visit the PNNL News Center, or follow PNNL on Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter.

Contact Information
Franny White
PIO
frances.white@pnnl.gov
Phone: 509-375-6904
Mobile: 360-333-4793

Franny White | newswise

Further reports about: Fish JSATS Laboratory PNNL Tracking acoustic juvenile

More articles from Interdisciplinary Research:

nachricht A new method for the 3-D printing of living tissues
16.08.2017 | University of Oxford

nachricht Bergamotene - alluring and lethal for Manduca sexta
21.04.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für chemische Ökologie

All articles from Interdisciplinary Research >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>