Over in Australia, barramundi are as prized as our largemouth bass. That’s why the government is trying to supplement the population in Lake Kununurra with stocking of small fish. This impoundment of the Ord River doesn’t allow barramundi to migrate to salt water. Instead, the fish stay put, feed heavily, and grow to record sizes. But how can researchers distinguish between fresh stockies and wild fish if the implants are too small for a traditional tag? Easy. Make them glow.
From the story on ABC Kimberley:
“Because they are 50 millimetres in size, they’re a little bit too small to put a normal tag into. We’ve found an organic compound that we’ve effectively bathed them in at a small size and they’ve been able to take that up and it embeds on their bones,” Jeff Cooper of the Kimberley Training Institute explains.
The result is a new generation of fluorescent barramundi populating Lake Kununurra.
“It allows us to identify them, and of course there’s absolutely no harm to anyone who wants to eat them,” says Mr. Cooper.