Publication Date



Open access

Embargo Period


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Marine Affairs and Policy (Marine)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Sarah K. Meltzoff

Second Committee Member

Maria L. Estevanez

Third Committee Member

Peter Chaibongsai


Almost the entirety of our understanding of billfish science comes from recreational fishing and constituent based tag and release programs. A uniform, global resource where anglers can participate and view their efforts in action will greatly contribute to the understanding, conservation, and management of these mysterious animals. It was this rationale that led The Billfish Foundation (TBF) to create the Online Tag and Release Database (TROD) as a companion to its existing Tag and Release Program. The TROD was designed to galvanize the sportfishing community and streamline how constituent anglers report data. Significant portions of active TBF members have not yet adopted the database. This is a group comprised of active participating captains and anglers. It is necessary for the future success of TROD to understand why this gap exists and how it can be narrowed. It is the aim of this project to alter and improve how existing members of TBF’s Tag and Release Program report data by adopting the TROD, increasing the overall amount of data gathered by TBF and the speed in which it is received. A social marketing and outreach campaign geared towards existing active constituents of TBF will effectively shift the paradigm of how tag and release data is reported and recorded through citizen science capacities. The need for this project is paramount for the large-scale success of the TROD; TBF’s Tag and Release Program; and billfish science, conservation, and management.


billfish; sportfishing; conservation; marketing; outreach; citizen science