Assessing the validity of information provided by tagging studies
Studies performed by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) have found fish identification volunteered by recreational anglers to agree 96 percent of the time with identifications made by biologists. TPWD also found that mean lengths estimated from volunteered angler data was more variable because of a bias to report fish lengths to the nearest inch, half inch, and quarter inch. Trip lengths reported by anglers immediately after a fishing trip have an error of estimation within .3h of the actual time 68 percent of the time. Angler reported fish weights are biased high for short fish and low for long fish. TPWD concludes that with proper background studies, angler volunteered data can be used in fisheries management. These include estimates for fishing pressure, growth, length-weight relationships, exploitation rates, and identification of common species landed.