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MEPS
Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 433:1-28 (2011)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps09202

FEATURE ARTICLE: REVIEW
Performance of pop-up satellite archival tags

M. K. Musyl1,*, M. L. Domeier2, N. Nasby-Lucas2, R. W. Brill3, L. M. McNaughton1, J. Y. Swimmer4, M. S. Lutcavage5,8, S. G. Wilson5, B. Galuardi5,8, J. B. Liddle6,7

1University of Hawaii, Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research (JIMAR), Kewalo Research Facility/NOAA, 1125B Ala Moana Boulevard, Honolulu, Hawaii 96814, USA
2Marine Conservation Science Institute, 2809 South Mission Road, Suite G, Fallbrook, California 92028, USA
3NOAA/NMFS Northeast Fisheries Science Center, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, PO Box 1346, Gloucester Point, Virginia 23062, USA
4NOAA/NMFS, Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center, 2570 Dole Street, Honolulu, Hawaii 96822, USA
5Large Pelagics Research Center, Department of Zoology, University of New Hampshire Durham, New Hampshire 03824, USA
6University of Alaska Southeast, Department of Mathematics, 1332 Seward Avenue, Sitka, Alaska 99835, USA
7Liddle and Lee LLC, 609 Sawmill Creek Road, Sitka, Alaska 99835, USA
8Present address: Large Pelagics Research Center, Natural Resources Conservation Department, University of Massachusetts at Amherst and Marine Fisheries Institute, 108 East Main Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930, USA

ABSTRACT: Pop-up satellite archival tags (PSATs) are used to chronicle or ‘archive’ the habitat preferences, horizontal and vertical movements, fishery interaction, and post-release mortality rates of a variety of pelagic animals. Though PSATs are valuable research tools, lower-than-expected reporting rates, early detachment, and incomplete data return remain problematic. These issues were quantified by analysis of reporting rates, retention times (i.e. the time period PSATs remained attached), and the quantity of depth, temperature, and geolocation data returned from 731 PSAT deployments on 19 species in the authors’ database and 1433 PSAT deployments on 24 species taken from 53 published articles. The reporting rate of PSATs deployed by the authors (0.79, 95% CI = 0.76 to 0.82) was not significantly different from the reporting rate calculated from published studies (0.76, 95% CI = 0.74 to 0.78). PSAT reporting rates were lowest in species undertaking large (~1000 m) vertical excursions (logistic regression, p = 0.006), and reporting rates have increased significantly over time (p = 0.02), presumably because of better PSAT design and construction. Tag retention increased with depth range of the tagged species and pop-off latitude (Cox proportional hazards models, p < 0.001), suggesting that pressure (and/or temperature), biofouling, and wound infection at the insertion site of the PSAT’s anchoring device influenced this parameter. The quantity of data returned by Argos satellites was affected by tag production year, programmed pop-up period, depth range, and manufacturer. Species-specific reporting rates were used to make recommendations for future PSAT sampling designs.


KEY WORDS: Argos · Logistic regression · Risk · Cox proportional hazards · Meta‑analysis · Odds ratio · Kaplan-Meier · Survival analysis · PSAT


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Cite this article as: Musyl MK, Domeier ML, Nasby-Lucas N, Brill RW and others (2011) Performance of pop-up satellite archival tags. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 433:1-28. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps09202

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