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A Cooperative Interstate Study to Evaluate....
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GRANT NUMBER:  NA67FD0031          NMFS NUMBER:   95-SER-010

REPORT TITLE:  A Cooperative Interstate Study to Evaluate Non-Reporting Rate of Recreational Anglers Who Capture Tagged Red Drum

AUTHOR:  Smith, Theodore I.J., and Woodward, Arnold G.

PUBLISH DATE:  September 1997

AVAILABLE FROM:  National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Region, 9721 Executive Center Drive, North, St. Petersburg, FL 33702.   PHONE: (813) 570-5324

ABSTRACT

The non-reporting levels of tagged red drum, (Sciaenops ocellantus) captured by recreational anglers in two estuaries, one in Georgia and one in South Carolina, were evaluated using two tag reward messages: Reward and $100 Reward.  The Reward inscribed message is the standard message used in fishery dependent tagging programs in the southeast, U.S.  Equal numbers of legal size fish (356 mm TL) were tagged with either reward message and released into ten locations in SC and GA.  A total of 1,500 fish have been stocked to date.  Data from the three stockings within the Charleston Harbor estuary, SC and from the three stockings in St. Simons Sound, GA have been analyzed.  The data from the final releases will be available in 1998. The main assumption was that a $100 Reward would be adequate incentive to assure 100% reporting of captured tagged fish and that the difference between "$100 Reward" and "Reward" tags would yield the non-reporting level.  Overall return level to date for all tagged fish in South Carolina was 24.4+1.4%, significantly higher than that reported in Georgia 16.5+1.5%.  Using all data no significant differences were detected between Reward tags (22.7+0.8%) and $100 Reward tags (26.2+2.5%) in SC.  In GA, 18.7+2.3% of $100 reward tags were reported, which was not significantly different from Reward tags (14.4+1.0%). Non-reporting estimates ranged from 0-44% which are lower than the 50% value commonly used by managers. However, analysis of this first data set suggests that the non-reporting level is not statistically identifiable. Inclusion of reporting data from the final stockings (2 estuaries with 3 stockings/estuary) will allow a more robust interpretation of the non-reporting levels for anglers who captured tagged red drum in SC and GA.

 
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