Satellite tagging Swordfish for Ocean Research

What are we doing?
We have helped design new satellite tags that allow us to track the movements of swordfish , the most mysterious, powerful and valiant predators encountered in the deep ocean. By tracking the location and depth of these fish, we will learn about where and when they live, eat, and breed. This information will improve swordfish management and both recreational and commercial fishing.

Why Swordfish?
Broadbill swordfish are magnificent creatures that have incredible value to both recreational and commercial fisheries. In many parts of the world swordfish stocks are either decimated on declining. Even in areas where populations are rebuilding, such as the southeastern United States, management efforts continue to be hindered by data gaps in their basic biology. Only 12 swordfish have ever been tagged in the southeastern United States: five of these fish were tagged by our team in August 2019 and also had GPS-quality satellite position tags, a first for swordfish in US waters (follow them live at ). 

Our primary goal is to collect the movement and diving data needed to understand swordfish migration, feeding patterns, and breeding locations. We have partnered with Wildlife Computers , the leading manufacturer of tracking tags manufacturer, to build custom sensors that allow us to observe how swordfish swim in three dimensions.

We need you!
It is difficult and expensive to tag these magnificent fish, and we are asking for your help. It cost us nearly $15,000 to tag a single fish. If we can reach our goal, we will be able to reduce our costs by tagging multiple fish in a single expedition. Our goal of $60,000 will allow us to tag a total of 8 individual swordfish, which will be trackable in real-time: this will cover the cost of chartering a boat, building satellite tracking packages, and support for the team.

To help recognize the individuals who support this project, any donor or groups of donors that give $10,000 will be given the chance to name one of the fish and be presented with a certificate and photo of their fish. If a single donor supports our efforts to the tune of $20,000, they will be invited to join us for a day of swordfish tagging.

Who are we?
Our team consists of oceanographers and tagging experts at the University of Washington  along with accomplished fishermen. We bring a unique combination of skills, experience, and passion to this project, and we hope you will support us!


  • Gus Steyer 
    • $40 
    • 3 mos
  • Kaitlyn Bunker 
    • $100 
    • 4 mos
  • Kairen Wong 
    • $350 
    • 4 mos
  • Full Spectrum Imaging 
    • $10 
    • 4 mos

Fundraising team: Operation Deep Drop (4)

Peter Gaube 
Raised $10 from 1 donation
Pompano Beach, FL
Martini Arostegui 
Team member
Raised $450 from 2 donations
Camrin Braun 
Team member
Kyla Drushka 
Team member
This team raised $40 from 1 other donation.
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