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Alaska Department of Fish and Game

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Black Rockfish (Sebastes melonops)

In Southeast Alaska, tagging studies have been performed on black rockfish. A total of 4,590 black rockfish were tagged and released with dart tags from 1996–2002. The majority of these fish were released around the north side of Kruzof Island. A total of 47 fish were recovered with an average distance of 4 km between release and recovery locations. Fish were recovered at distances of less than 1 km to 15 km from their release locations.

The Alaska Department of Fish & Game sport fish division is conducting research on recompression of rockfish caught by anglers. Rockfish that are brought up from depth are often at risk to death or injury due to changes in water pressure due to expanding gas in their swim bladder. Research conducted by both the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and Oregon State University show promise in increased short term survival after recompression. By releasing the rockfish at depth, the expanded gas may contract and external signs of barotrauma may disappear. More research is being conducted to determine the effects of recompression on long term survival.

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