Application of bioelectrical impedance analysis as a method for estimating composition and metabolic condition of southern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) during conventional tagging
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Willis, J and Hobday, AJ, Application of bioelectrical impedance analysis as a method for estimating composition and metabolic condition of southern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) during conventional tagging , Fisheries Research, 93, (1-2) pp. 64-71. ISSN 0165-7836 (2008) [Refereed Article]
Tagging fish without gathering physiological information may be a wasted opportunity. We tested bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) for measurement of relative condition of southern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) during conventional tagging at sea. We refined the equipment and method by measurement of 360 fish during conventional and acoustic tagging. Our results demonstrate that BIA is an accurate measure of condition for southern bluefin tuna in the same way it has been shown to be for metabolic condition and composition in other vertebrates including humans. Further, there is sufficient variation in BIA measures of the natural population to give meaningful measures of both metabolic condition and composition between groups at different times and developmental stages. Condition of tuna in this study may be related to the ocean environment just prior to measurement. BIA meets the necessary objectives for measuring fish condition during tagging as it is shown to be harmless, reliable, quick, and effective and does not disrupt conventional tagging operations. In the light of these results this type of condition measurement should be taken wherever possible in future tagging operations for this and other similar species, which will generate new insight into the ecological challenges faced by pelagic fishes. The ability to relate recent ocean environments and subsequent patterns in fish survival may lead to changes in the way tagging data is interpreted. © 2008.
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