Scientists have unveiled new information about fish behavior, habits and experiences using a new fitness tracker for fish.
The new device, which was described as a “Fitbit for fish,” allowed scientists to gather a wide range of data about a fish in real time. The biosensor can collate information like tail movement, calories burned, location, temperature, pressures and more.
The research was conducted by scientists at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and is a culmination of more than a decade’s work. The original inspiration for the work was tackling the hydropower problem, which aims to provide safe migratory passage for fish species traversing a hydropower dam.
Where the “Lab-on-a-Fish” shines is its tiny size. The device weighs a minuscule 2.4 grams and can gather data for eight months. Being the size of a pen cap, the device is sufficiently small to allow researchers to study a wide range of smaller species to give them a better picture of the ecosystem.
Commenting on the work, Daniel Deng, a PNNL mechanical engineer, stated:
“The Lab-on-a-Fish offers something needed in conservation and aquaculture — a cost-effective way to monitor fish health and behavior. If we want to know what stresses a fish out, we need to use tracking data and link that with detailed environmental, health and behavior data. This is the first time this information can be integrated in this way.”
You can check out a video of the work below.