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June 09, 2014

Bonefish and Tarpon Trust Launches Bonefish Genetics Program and Tarpon Genetics Program

Two programs will use tissue samples collected by anglers for genetics to determine the extent that bonefish and tarpon, in different locations, are related.

Bonefish and Tarpon Trust is excited to officially announce the launch of our Bonefish Genetics and Tarpon Genetics Programs. These two programs will use tissue samples collected by anglers for genetic analysis to determine the extent that bonefish and tarpon in different locations are related.

We are asking anglers who fish for bonefish and tarpon to collect tissue samples from the fish they catch (a scale for tarpon, a fin clip for bonefish), and then submit the samples to us for analysis. Our focus is the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and southeastern US. We are especially interested in tarpon DNA samples that come from outside the state of Florida, but all samples will be helpful. 

We already know from tagging research that bonefish have a relatively small home range except for spawning migrations, while tarpon are capable of undergoing long-distance migrations. The goal of the Bonefish Genetics Program is to determine the extent that bonefish populations in different locations in the Caribbean and Western Atlantic are related. The goal of the Tarpon Genetics Program is to determine if there is a single, regional tarpon population or multiple sub-populations.

The data will provide invaluable information to help us guide management strategies. But, these multi-year programs will only be successful if anglers and guides participate. To obtain a bonefish genetics or tarpon genetics sampling kit, please email info@bonefishtarpontrust.org or call 321-674-7758.

For more information about the Bonefish Genetics Program  click here.

For more information about the Tarpon Genetics Program  click here.