A pit tag is crunchy, but not tasty

Pit tag
Photo by Shelley Phillips
Well that was a first. I was enjoying a steelhead fillet for dinner that I caught in the Salmon River in October, and I felt an odd crunch. Even if I happened to bite down on a bone, it would not not have felt like that. I took it out of my mouth and wondered “what the heck” and then saw the tiny copper wiring. I’ve seen pit tags before, and it’s about the right size and shape – about a quarter inch long and twice the thickness of a grain of rice.

They’re surgically placed inside steelhead so the fish can be tracked through the dams on the Snake and Columbia rivers. As the fish pass through the fish ladders at the dam, technicians know where the fish was tagged and where it is headed.

This might seem a random coincidence, but I am not sure. It may be time to break out the tinfoil beanie and start spouting conspiracy theories. After all, it was THE GOVERNMENT that put it there, and normally the tags are inserted into the abdomen and get tossed out with the fish guts. This was embedded in the flesh.

It’s all starting to sound a little fishy (pun intended). Had I swallowed it, THEY could have tracked me. Probably for only about 24 hours, but still.

Just wanted to go on record in case I suddenly disappear. Please search Area 51 first. Pretty sure that’s where THEY would take me.

Posted in Into the Outdoors