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Revealing pelagic habitat use: the tagging of Pacific pelagics program
Block, B.A.; Costa, D.P.; Boehlert, G.W.; Kochevar, R.E. (2002). Revealing pelagic habitat use: the tagging of Pacific pelagics program. Oceanol. Acta 25(5): 255-266. dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0399-1784(02)01212-4
In: Oceanologica Acta. Elsevier/Gauthier-Villars: Montreuil. ISSN 0399-1784, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Keyword
    Marine
Author keywords
    pelagic habitat; tagging; pelagic organism

Authors  Top 
  • Block, B.A.
  • Costa, D.P.
  • Boehlert, G.W.
  • Kochevar, R.E.

Abstract
    Tagging of Pacific pelagics (TOPP) is a pilot program of the Census of marine life (CoML) that will lead to understanding of pelagic habitat use by marine vertebrates and large squid in the North Pacific. Taking a multispecies approach, the TOPP project will use a range of electronic tag technologies to put the distribution and behavior of pelagic organisms, in the context of the oceanography of the North Pacific. Tag-bearing animals will be used as autonomous ocean profilers to enhance sparse oceanographic observations for vast ocean regions. These autonomous ocean samplers will provide unprecedented coverage of the water column structure of the North Pacific. The temporal and spatial data generated by this project will provide an "organism-eye" view of several interactive oceanic regimes in the North Pacific. Twenty target species, including tunas, sharks, pinnipeds, cetaceans, seabirds, and marine turtles, will be monitored with electronic tags. Animal-collected oceanic data will be assimilated into global ocean databases, complement traditional methodologies and be used to help validate nearshore, regional, and basin scale ocean models. As more environmental information is gathered and delivered from the tagged animals, new insights will be obtained about their individual behaviors, as well as how diverse species have separately evolved to forage, reproduce, and survive in the vast pelagic environment. This multi-disciplinary approach will allow a novel merger of biological and physical data to provide a new understanding of the relationship between the movements and behaviors of marine organisms and oceanographic processes in the eastern North Pacific.

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