Retention of plastic-tipped dart tags in African tigerfish Hydrocynus vittatus
Estimates of tag retention and tagging-related mortality are essential for mark-recapture experiments. Mortality and tag loss were estimated from 15 tigerfish Hydrocynus vittatus marked using Hallmark model PDL plastic-tipped dart tags released into a 1 730 m2 pond at Kamutjonga Inland Fisheries Institute, Namibia, and inspected bi-monthly for the presence or absence of tags. No mortality was observed during the experiment. All marked fish had lost their tags after 10 months and 50% tag loss was estimated at 3.9 months. The high tag loss rate indicates that PDL plastic-tipped dart tags are not suitable for long-term studies on this species.
Keywords: capture-mark-recapture, freshwater, tagging, tag retention, Namibia