As part of our StriperFest this year, we auctioned off 40 sonic tags that were inserted by NC Division of Marine Fisheries biologists into stripers caught during the Tag & Release Fishing Tournament. These tags are an important part of a study funded by the Cape Fear River Watch Striper Foundation to track movements of Striped Bass populations, and to help determine the effectiveness of the new rock ramp at Lock & Dam #1. Once the tags were inserted, the race was on! The bidder who chose the tagged striper that was the first to swim over the new fish passage wins a $2000 prize!
We are very excited to announce that we have a winning fish! Congratulations to Danielle Lucas!! Her Striped Bass was the first to swim over the dam utilizing the Rock Arch Rapid Fish Passage. We know that Danielle’s fish used the Weir because of special sensors positioned in multiple locations in the Cape Fear River. We are thrilled to see that the fish are continuing to use the newly completed fish passage.
Now that we know the fish are able to use the Weir and swim past the Dam on their own, the new question is where are they going? We will continue to monitor the 40 tagged Stripers and will soon have answers as to how far they go up river, when they return down river, and whether or not they go out into the ocean. It is exciting times for all the people involved in the restoration of the fishery of the Cape Fear River!
The maps below show the movement of the stripers. The first shows Danielle’s fish as it moves upstream. The other two videos show the 40 tagged fish (in two groups of 20 to help reduce overlap). Enjoy!
View Danielle’s winning fish as it makes its way up river to Lock & Dam #1.
View the other Tagged Striped Bass Movements here! We split the maps into two so that the fish were easier to see – first 20 here!
View the second 20 here! Do you see your fish?
We would like to thank the NC Army Corps of Engineers, the NC Division of Marine Fisheries, the Striper Foundation and all fish tag bidders at StriperFest 2013 – without you all we could not have made this happen!