Ringed Seal Research Results 2011 Tagging
Results from the Summer of 2011:
In July 2011, the NSB DWM began capturing ringed seals using monofilament gill nets along the ice edge during breakup and using dip nets to catch animals resting on ice flows and beaches. Length, girth and weight measurements are taken, as well as blood samples for health assessment.
Capture Team: Jason Herreman, Bobby Sarren, Ross Burgener, Joe Skin, Lyndon Itta, Leandra de Sousa
Other Participants: Heather Ziel, Lori Quakenbush, Katie Roseberry, Craig George
Ringed seal swimming into the gill net. Photo: Leandra de Sousa
Jason Herreman capturing seal on the ice in dip net. Photo: Leandra de Sousa
Jason holding the seal while Lyndon Itta takes a girth measurement. Photo: Leandra de Sousa
Jason and Ross Burgener taking a length measurement of a ringed seal
Joe Skin with SPLASH tagged ringed seal. Note the board and scale used for weight measurements
To date 20 ringed seals have been tagged with a combination of Smart Position Transmitting Tags (SPOT) and Data Collecting Argos Tags (SPLASH) tags from Wildlife Computers. SPOT tags are placed on the animals flippers and will only provide information when seals haul out. SPLASH tags are glued to the top of the head and will provide information every time a seal surfaces and the tag is able to link up with the satellite. SPLASH tags will only stay on the animal and provide data until the next molt while SPOT tags will provide data until the life of the battery runs out.
Ross and Joe with SPLASH tagged ringed seal. Photo: Jason Herreman
SPOT tag on flipper of ringed seal. Photo: Jason Herreman
Ross with ringed seal with SPOT tag
Released ringed seal with SPLASH tag. Photo: Leandra de Sousa
Updated location maps for the tagged ringed seals will be posted periodically. For more current maps, please contact us.
Close-up map of the seal locations north and east of Barrow and associated sea ice cover. Please note that four animals traveled to the sea ice edge and appeared to haul out. (Map courtesy of Dave Douglas, USGS)
Tracks of tagged ringed seals as of November 16, 2011. The colored letters indicate the location on that day. The tracks indicate the travel pattern of the individual ringed seal since tagging in July or August. (Map courtesy of Dave Douglas, USGS)
Above is a map of the latest ringed seal movement in the Bering Straits region as of December 12, 2011. (Map courtesy of Dave Douglas, USGS)
Above is the latest ringed seal movement map from January 27, 2012. Seals appear to have set up their winter territories as they have been hanging out in the same general areas for the last month. A spot tag on a 6th animal has also reported in this last month. That animal is hanging out just north of the dark blue seal on the Russian side. (Map courtesy of Dave Douglas, USGS)
Above is the latest ringed seal map from April 5, 2012. We have received transmissions from one of our spot tagged animals down in the Bering Sea in the general vicinity of our other tags. (Map courtesy of Dave Douglas, USGS)
Above is the latest ringed seal map from May 25, 2012. (Map courtesy of Dave Douglas, USGS)