Title: Evaluation of PIT tagging effects on growth and survival of white bass fingerlings used for quantitative genetic trials Authors
Submitted to: Book of Abstracts Aquaculture America
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: November 23, 2009
Publication Date: March 1, 2010
Citation: Fuller, S.A., Mcentire, M.E. 2010. Evaluation of PIT tagging effects on growth and survival of white bass fingerlings used for quantitative genetic trials [abstract]. Book of Abstracts Aquaculture America. p.352. Technical Abstract: Tagging fish for individual or family identification is advantageous to ensure equal family representation in genetics trials and to assess within and between family trait variation without expensive molecular methods. However, tagging can adversely affect performance traits as well as survival, especially for high tag to body ratios common in fingerling research. To determine the minimum size for passive integrated (PIT) tagging in white bass (Morone chrysops) fingerlings without negatively influencing survival or growth, tagging was evaluated in the 2009 year-class of white bass in two tagging locations (dorsal muscle and abdominal cavity). Tag loss rate, as well as the effect on growth and mortality rates, was determined. Six statistically distinct size classes were segregated via bar grader from the same variable-size population. Size class means ranged from 6.52 to 30.28g (65 – 147 mm TL). Twenty-five fish were distributed randomly into each of three replicate 100 L aquaria for each tagging location and each size class. Fish were anaesthetized prior to tagging with alcohol-sterilized PIT tags (Biomark, Boise, ID; 8.5mm x 2.12mm, 0.067g) using a standard 12 gauge tagging syringe either in the dorsal musculature (DM) or in the abdominal cavity (A). Seventy-five fish were anaesthetized and untagged as a control (C) for each size class. There was significantly higher tag retention and survival in fish tagged in the abdominal cavity in the 6 g (p < 0.0001) and 14 g fish (p = 0.002). There was significantly reduced survival in both tag locations in 6g fish (A, p = 0.03; DM, p = 0.049), and 14g fish tagged in the dorsal muscle (p = 0.04). Tag retention and survival was 100% over 14 g. There were no significant differences in growth between fish tagged at either tag location and controls in any of the tag groups, however we are continuing to assess long-term effects of tagging on growth. These results demonstrate that PIT tagging white bass fingerlings larger than 14 g is feasible without negatively influencing either survival or growth.