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Development and validation of a drill attachment for faster and safer deployments of fin-mounted geolocators in large-bodied sharks

Heim, Vital and Luescher, Daniel and Hottinger, Juergen and Ebert, Dieter. (2022) Development and validation of a drill attachment for faster and safer deployments of fin-mounted geolocators in large-bodied sharks. Animal Biotelemetry, 10 (1). ARTN 33.

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Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/93115/

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Abstract

Fin-mounted geolocators are widely used in marine studies to track animal movements and to design informed management strategies. However, the deployment protocols of such geolocators, which normally consist of drilling one to multiple holes using a template, can be challenging, and depending on the animal's stress physiology and ocean conditions, speed and accuracy may be crucial. Here, we present the plans for a drill attachment allowing the template-free drilling of up to four holes simultaneously for a faster, more accurate and safer deployment of fin-mounted geolocators. The drill attachment was successfully tested on four great and two scalloped hammerheads, Sphyrna mokarran and Sphyrna lewini, which were all tagged with 4-bolt Smart Position and Temperature (SPOT) tags. The time required to secure the geolocators, from drill alignment to the complete fastening of the last bolt, ranged from 68 to 85 s (78.2 +/- 10.9 s, mean +/- SD). The new drill attachment further allowed the successful tagging of a great hammerhead alongside a research vessel in rough seas that would have made the deployment using traditional protocols more challenging. Simultaneously drilling four holes reduces the need to keep the animal's fin steady for an extended period of time and thus makes the deployment of fin-mounted geolocators less dependent on the animal's behavior and the weather conditions. As such, the 4-hole drill attachment makes the mounting process faster and more reliable and should reduce the stress experienced by the animal.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Integrative Biologie > Evolutionary Biology (Ebert)
UniBasel Contributors:Ebert, Dieter and Heim, Vital and Hottinger, J├╝rgen
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
ISSN:2050-3385
e-ISSN:2050-3385
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Identification Number:
Last Modified:31 Jan 2023 13:49
Deposited On:31 Jan 2023 13:49

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