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198331900 - New Marking & Monitoring Tech

Sponsor: National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Budgets: FY07: $768,685 | FY08: $1,357,243 | FY09: $1,596,791

Short description: The goal of this project is to develop and evaluate fish-tracking technologies needed to assess the effectiveness of management actions and strategies for recovery of ESA-listed fish populations.

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Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)

Funding category: Expense

Recommended budgets: FY07: $909,930 | FY08: $1,149,930 | FY09: $909,930


ISRP final recommendation: Fundable


This is a strong proposal with high priority application of the technology in the basin, good personnel, and an excellent track record. The project sponsors have been responsive to past ISRP reviews. The proponents plan to explore the application of PIT tag technologies to surface bypass systems (RSWs, Bonneville corner collector, even spillways and turbines). The evaluation of the G2 transceiver for instream interrogations will require development of new antenna arrays and even new tags (A-PIT). These efforts are tied in generally to the BiOps, UPA, and systemwide passage program summary, although particular elements are not listed. Effective PIT tag systems underlie much of the salmon recovery efforts in the Columbia River Basin, and the extensive history presented in this proposal leaves no doubt of the importance of the work to answering questions about the survival of anadromous salmonids in the Columbia River Basin. The proposal does a good job relating the technologies developed in the past to ongoing and future projects. Less information is provided about the need for the advanced technologies they propose to develop, and specifically which projects might employ these developments. That is, they are necessarily a bit ahead of many of the projects that will use new PIT tags and transceivers. The investigators should be aware of work being done by the mid-Columbia Public Utility Districts (PUDs). The value of this long-term effort is well established. Continued improvement in tags and antennas is expected to further improve the knowledge of salmonids in the basin and the ability to carry out adaptive management. Some of this work is necessary because increased downstream passage through surface bypasses, RSWs, and spill has reduced the numbers of fish that are detected through the conventional PIT-tag interrogation systems. So development of detectors for these alternative routes is needed in order to collect the juvenile fish passage data for management actions. The proposal provides a well-detailed listing of work elements, with a systematic, step-by-step approach that allows for periodic feedback from outside experts and changes in direction as necessitated by the results from each step. Past work has produced a handful of publications, some of them describing older, outmoded technologies. Equipment development and testing is the primary focus of this proposal (with the product being efficient tags and antennas). However, it would be good to see more of this information get out into the primary fisheries (and electronic) literature in order to inform scientists and engineers outside of the basin about the possibilities.

State/province recommendation: MS: Core Program

Review group: MSRT

Recommended budgets: FY07: $909,930 | FY08: $1,149,930 | FY09: $909,930

Comment: The MSRT would like to see cost sharing by the USACE for this work. The big cost for this project is for installing detectors at RSWs, which should be included in the cost of their development. A funding recommendation needs to consider the budget path for this project into the future. The MSRT would also like to make sure that the technology that is developed through this project includes usefulness for lamprey.