|Dissecting salmon snout|
Back at the lab, we dissect the tag from the salmon’s snout and read the number with a microscope. The tag numbers are then entered into the same database along with other biological information we collect. State and tribal agencies similarly enter the tag numbers they detect in adult salmon caught in fisheries taking place in the Pacific Ocean and Puget Sound. At the end of the year, we summarize information in this database to evaluate the success of each U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service hatchery and its ability to produce enough fish for the many anglers who rely, in part, on hatchery fish for tribal culture, commercial interest, and recreation.
Here are two short videos showing how we process the salmon heads to recover the tags: