Mackerel and Herring Tagging

Project Summary

The FSRS was contracted by DFO from 2009 – 2012 to undergo a tagging project of mackerel and herring along the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia and off the west coast of Newfoundland. The initial goal for the project was to tag about 3000 mackerel in Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, the catches were low the first year of the project making this goal unattainable. Luckily, with the help of the fishermen,  a solution was brought forward that would be feasible for the desired project results. Instead of the FSRS technician being the only one tagging 3000 mackerel, the fishermen were also trained on how to tag properly. This allowed them to tag mackerel as they were caught over the course of the season. This allowed about 600 mackerel to be tagged within the first year. The following year, FSRS traveled to Newfoundland with 5000 tags. Unfortunately, due to weather constraints, the FSRS was only able to tag 989 mackerel, but taught the captain and crew how to conduct the tagging procedure so the project could continue once FSRS left. This allowed an additional 1000 mackerel to be tagged. The following years it was decided to move efforts to herring and over the course of two years over 8000 herring were tagged off the coast of Newfoundland.

When anyone found a herring or mackerel with a tag, they were to send the tag back to the address indicated, along with date and location of capture, method of capture, name, phone number and mailing address of the person who found it. A $10 reward was given for each tag returned.


This project allowed scientists to learn more about the movements of fish stocks along the Atlantic coast.

Years the Project Ran


%d bloggers like this: