Long-Term Tagged Tautog Recaptures
I received information about a tautog I tagged seven years ago, tag number 138508. At that time, the fish was 16.75 inches long. The fish was caught on the Consol. It was recaptured this year by me. The fish was now 24 inches long and still on the Consol. Time at large was 2,499 days.
It was thought this might be the oldest recapture in the Game Fish Tagging Program but a quick check showed another tautog, recaptured this year had been at large longer.
About 8 years ago, I tagged an 11.5 inch tautog on the Westmoreland (tag number 121136). It was recaptured on the Cape Henry Wreck with a reported length of 16 inches. That fish had been at large for 2,826 days.
Both of these fish were re-released with their tags in place.
Each one of those fish only grew 30 to 40% in the approximate 7 to 8 year time span. That's amazingly slow. It's also interesting how the juvenile fish left one wreck to live at another. I bet there is a lot more to be learned about these fish.
Thanks for posting
Good stuff, that's one handsome tog if there is such a thing.
Originally Posted by South Paw
Tagger Ken Neill sets a new record for the Virginia Game Fish Tagging Program
April 10, 2012
by Susanna Musick
Angler Ken Neill, III, is a record breaker.
It was 8 years ago today that Ken Neill tagged an 11.5 inch tautog when fishing off Cape Henry. Neill didn’t think about the fish again for a long time, until January this year, when he received his recapture report. Neill’s fish was recaptured on January 5, 2012 by Joe Stagnato, close to the very location where it was tagged. Neill’s tautog was at large for 2,826 days, only 94 days short of 8 years. Ken’s tautog set a new record for days at large for the Virginia Game Fish Tagging Program (VGFTP). But Neill is no stranger to catching big “togs.” In late February he caught one of his own tagged tautog on the same wreck where he tagged it nearly 7 years ago. Originally tagged at 16.75 inches, the fish had grown to two feet when he recaptured it in February.
“Ken’s recaptures are exciting because they help tell the story of these fish. Thanks to his tagging effort and the recapture reports we know that these fish haven’t moved far (or not at all in the case of the second tautog); we know how much they’ve grown and we know that we’ve had success with tag retention in a structure-oriented species. These are great data to document the long-term use and importance of these habitats for these fish. We’re very lucky to have dedicated anglers like Ken in our program,” says VIMS marine recreation specialist and co-coordinator of the VGFTP, Susanna Musick.
Since 1995, the VGFTP has tagged10 species of recreationally important finfish with the help of volunteer anglers. A cooperative effort between the Marine Advisory Program at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) and Saltwater Tournament at the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC), the program’s funding is from state saltwater license funds and VIMS.
And Ken Neill, III keeps breaking records. On March 25, 2012 he landed a 24 pound, 3 ounce tautog setting a new state record in Virginia!
That's amazing, how long do these fish live then?
from the record press release:
Originally Posted by Ghostle
The sex will be determined through a necropsy and the otilith and opercula bones will be removed from the fish and taken to Old Dominion University’s CQFE Ageing Lab where age will be determined. The CQFE Ageing Lab has been examing tautog since 1999. To date the two heaviest tautog, both female, were determined to be 12 years (22-pounds and 9-ounces) and 17 years (21-pounds 13-ounces). Likewise the two oldest tautog were female at 23 years (11.49 pounds) and 22 years (at 12.99 pounds). So it will be interesting to learn how information from the new State Record fish, at over 2 pounds heavier and over an inch longer than any prior tautog sampled, fits the existing pattern. The shape of the head suggests the fish is female. The 24-pound, 3-ounce record-setting tautog measured 32 inches in length and had a girth of 26-3/4 inches.
Some aging data: http://www.mrc.virginia.gov/rec_asse...SCP_Tautog.pdf
very interesting info, more to learn about fish than most people think ....... thanks for posting
Thanks for posting the tagging info. Were the tags still is good condition? A Tog my wife caught was at large for a year, the tag was fully encrusted with growth. It was caught and captured at the 3rd island. They seem to be sedentary critters.
the accumulated growth on a tag is probably like the growth on a boat bottom, depends on where its kept.
Originally Posted by codenurse
If it took seven years for tht tog to grow 8 inches then that 24in tog must be over 20 years old.... Crazy cool