Tracking fish in the abyss: Ingestible transponders and autonomous lander vehicles

 Monty Priede, Ph.D.
 University of Aberdeen,

 Wednesday, September 3, 2003
 Pacific Form 3:00 p.m.

Life in the deep sea is largely dependent on food supplies from the photic surface layers of the ocean.  Therefore, it is not surprising that artificial food falls, fish or cetacean carcasses, placed on the sea floor invariably attract scavenging fishes and other animals.  Analysis of species, numbers and rates of movement can be related to the trophic characteristics of the ocean region being studied.  Furthermore, by inducing individual animals to ingest acoustic transponders, animals can be tracked to investigate behavior strategies as they move beyond the field of optical camera systems. Since deep sea fishes can rarely be retrieved to the surface alive, attracting fish to baited autonomous experiments deployed on the sea floor has been essential to gaining new insights into adaptations and activity patterns of deep sea fauna.