Since 2003 we have released ~ 45, 966 tagged yellowtail flounder. Of the releases, ~ 45,666 were lottery tags, ~ 439 were high reward tags, and ~ 801 were data storage tags. From 2003 to 2005 all of the tagged yellowtail flounder were released from trawl gear, but new in 2006, ~ 547 tagged yellowtail were released from gill net gear.
Papers, Posters & Presentations
  • Yellowtail Tagging 2007 Interim Final Report. Paper
  • Yellowtail Tagging 2006 Final Report. Paper
  • Cage Study Annual Report. Paper
  • International Council for Exploration of the Sea, Sept. 2004. Paper / Poster
  • Northeast Fish and Wildlife Conference, April 2005. Oral presentation
  • Proceedings from tagging workshop, October 2004. Paper
  • Ninth Flatfish Biology Conference, Dec.2004. Paper
  • Electronic Tagging Workshop, August, 2005. "The Use of Information from Electronic Tags for Stock Assessment of Northeast Fishery Resources" - Abstract
Summaries of the Annual Yellowtail Cooperators Meetings
Information on DST Tags
  • Partitioning On-bottom and Off-bottom Behavior: a case study with yellowtail flounder off New England. ICES CM 2006/Q:14. Full Paper
  • The Use of Electronic Tags to Study Fish Movement: a case study with yellowtail flounder off New England. ICES CM 2004/K:81. Full paper
  • The data storage tag poster presented at ICES
Page last modified: November 9, 2006
To date, ~ 3,337 yellowtail flounder tags have been recaptured and reported. Of this total, 95.83% (~3,197) are lottery tags, 1.3% (~ 45) are high reward tags, and 2.2% (~ 75) are data storage tags.
Who are returning tags?
Reporter # of reported tags Percentage
61.9 %
Beach combers
National Marine Fisheries Service Observers
School for Marine Science and Technology
Maps of Yellowtail Flounder Movements
All releases and recaptures
Movements of yellowtail released in Cape Cod - Gulf of Maine area
Movements of yellowtail release in Georges Bank area
Movements of yellowtail released in New England - Mid Atlantic area
Time at Large
Recaptured yellowtail flounder have been on average at large for 137 days before recapture, with the shortest time being 1 day between release and recapture, and the longest time being 1230 days (~ 3 years and 4 months).
Data Storage Tags
Yellowtail flounders with data storage tags and that were at large for at least one month showed distinct off-bottom movements. The fish were typically off the bottom in the evening hours between 7:00 pm to 2:00 am, for about 4 hours at a time, and rising on average15 m from the bottom. For more details about the data storage tags click on a link on the right.

Cage/Holding Studies
Results from the holding (in tanks) studies, where yellowtail flounder were collected and transported back to a laboratory at Woods Hole, MA, suggested that there is very little effect of tagging on flounder mortality rates. There was no tag loss and the muscles and tissues around the tag looked normal and showed no infection.
The 2005 caging study, showed a low mortality for both tagged and untagged yellowtail flounder. This suggests that there is no tag induced mortality, but mortality due to capture and caging.

Overall these studies showed no short-term or long-term effects from tagging on yellowtail flounder.
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(File Modified Dec. 29 2006)