Satellite Tagging Manta Rays and Whale Sharks in Indonesia
Propspeed isn't just awesome for propellers. Marine biologists are using our foul-release coating to keep deployed satellite tags clean so they can track deep-dwelling species and better understand their behavior.
Needing a nonmetallic, nontoxic, antifoul coating to use on satellite tags, Mark Erdmann, vice president of Asia-Pacific Marine Programs at Conservation International, turned to Propspeed upon a colleague’s recommendation. A year later, several Propspeed-coated tags have been recovered from the manta rays they were deployed on, showing very little fouling despite the rays living in a warm-water, growth-rich environment.
“Conservation International has its New Zealand base at the University of Auckland’s Institute of Marine Sciences, and we support country-specific programs throughout the Asia-Pacific region. In Indonesia, one of our priority programs is working with the government to conduct a large-scale satellite and acoustic tagging program on manta rays and whale sharks in order to better understand their movements around Indonesia to optimally manage their populations.
“The tagging programs have been very successful to date and have provided a tremendous amount of exciting data. Propspeed is a very efficient and easy way of keeping the tags free of fouling so they will reliably transmit. We’re not the only marine research program using Propspeed; satellite tag manufacturer Wildlife Computers recommends Propspeed specifically in its user manuals, and now you can even order your tags pre-coated.”
For more information, check out Mark’s blog post on the whale shark tagging program.