And thanks to everyone for your support and patience while we pulled together all the final data. The tracks we got were really amazing, and well worth the time and effort it took to get them. Sincerest thanks go out to the tournament organizers and sponsors, to the angling teams, and to the captains and crews who so generously supported the Great Marlin Race. We absolutely could not have done this work without you!
In reviewing the tracks, it was incredible to see not only how far the fish traveled - but also how diverse their patterns of behavior. Having all begun their journeys from roughly the same time and place, their final destinations were separated by more than 2,000 nautical miles!
From the datasets we received, it appears that, regardless of location, the marlin spent their nights right near the surface, and their days much deeper - often 200-300 meters down, just to the boundary between the relatively warm water above and the frigid water below.
We are very excited about the upcoming HIBT, and the opportunity to deploy more tags on these magnificent fish! Because so many race tags didn't come up, we are offering those teams whose tags didn't show up free replacement tags for the 2010 Great Marlin Race. By shortening the deployment times this year, we're confident that we'll have a higher percentage of tags coming up. And by adding a depth-triggered release, we'll also learn whether some non-reporting fish might be sinking to the bottom - having fallen ill or been injured, or having run afoul of a predator or a long line.
We are looking forward to seeing everyone again this August, and will stay in touch over the coming weeks as details of the 2010 Great Marlin Race are announced.
Best wishes to all!