Testing Equipment: Importance and Recommendations

Testing equipment, particularly current clamps and scopemeters, have a substantial role to play in electrofishing sampling programs.  I was first introduced to this notion years ago by A. Lawrence (“Larry”) Kolz and Jim Reynolds, two people that made substantial advances in the conceptual basis for electrofishing.  Since then, Jan Dean and I have used test equipment in a number of situations, built Excel-based programs to utilize collected information, and have worked on identifying inexpensive yet accurate meter alternatives.

In this blog, I will attempt to describe purposes of testing equipment, some approaches and considerations regarding their use, share a few of our test results, and provide a list of suggested models.

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Boat Electrode Changes: Effects on Resistance

Overall resistance of an electrofishing system is determined by the combination of ambient water conductivity and the electrodes.  The electrode shape, number, length or size, diameter of stock material, configuration and spacing affect both their overall resistance and the profile of the electrical field in the water around the electrodes.  Rarely are there data available for assessing the effects of electrode changes on resistance or on fish catch. This blog presents some empirical results from field measurements of electrode resistance before and after some electrode changes.

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Ambient or specific conductivity?

Of all the environmental variables which affect electrofishing success, the one for which the most is known, and indeed it has been said is the most important, is water conductivity. This article explores the how and why of conductivity in electrofishing.
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Selection of Electrofishing Equipment

Selection of appropriate gear types and models is frequently a difficult task. Often decisions are made with little basis.  Here we highlight some factors that we think should be considered when selecting or purchasing electrofishing gear.

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Considerations for Water Conductivity Meters

Determining water conductivity is critical to improve the efficiency and precision of electrofishing sampling, for electrode design, and even as an input to deciding which control box model to purchase or which equipment type to use. Water conductivity has much more value than simply a number placed in a table for completeness.  Reasonably accurate measurement of water conductivity is essential.

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Fish Handling Gloves

Temporary immobilization of fish by electricity (“electroanesthesia” or “electrosedation”) is becoming more common in fisheries work.

Electroanesthesia makes easier handling fish for tag-implantation, spawning, measurement, and other processing tasks.

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Electrode resistance procedures

This document provides guidance for making electrode measurements on various gear types, using an external power source and an internal power source.Continue Reading..

How to use a backpack unit

Dr Alan Temple introduces the key concepts and methods of operating various backpack electrofishing units.

Boat electrofishing safety

Dr Alan Temple introduces the key concepts and methods of assessing the safety of boat electrofishing units.

How to make a voltage gradient probe

A voltage gradient probe is used to measure and map electrical fields produced by electrofishing units. It can be a valuable tool for assessing and standardising electrofishing equipment.

Download the PDF file with detailed DIY instructions.

 

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