Science nabs lying fisherman

A man attempting to cheat his way into a $500 prize for catching a hefty Chinook linkurl:salmon;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/12212/ was recently foiled by one of the most basic tenets of fisheries biology: if you know a fish's length, you can pretty accurately predict its weight. You see, a primary tool that fisheries biologists use to assess the health or habitat quality of different fish species or populations is what they call a linkurl:length-weight regression.;http://www.mi

Bob Grant
Bob Grant

Bob Grant is Editor in Chief of The Scientist, where he started in 2007 as a Staff Writer.

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Jun 24, 2008
A man attempting to cheat his way into a $500 prize for catching a hefty Chinook linkurl:salmon;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/12212/ was recently foiled by one of the most basic tenets of fisheries biology: if you know a fish's length, you can pretty accurately predict its weight. You see, a primary tool that fisheries biologists use to assess the health or habitat quality of different fish species or populations is what they call a linkurl:length-weight regression.;http://www.michigandnr.com/PUBLICATIONS/PDFS/ifr/manual/SMII%20Chapter17.pdf The established, mathematic relationship between length and weight in a particular fish species can tell a biologist a lot about the condition of an individual member of that species. I guess Canadian fisherman Norval Boufford wasn't counting on that on May 13, when he hauled an abnormally bulky salmon to a weigh-in station in St. Catharines, Ontario. Boufford was angling for the $500 prize given to the largest fish of the day during the annual linkurl:Salmon Masters Derby;http://www.salmonmastersderby.com/index.php...
s recently foiled by one of the most basic tenets of fisheries biology: if you know a fish's length, you can pretty accurately predict its weight. You see, a primary tool that fisheries biologists use to assess the health or habitat quality of different fish species or populations is what they call a linkurl:length-weight regression.;http://www.michigandnr.com/PUBLICATIONS/PDFS/ifr/manual/SMII%20Chapter17.pdf The established, mathematic relationship between length and weight in a particular fish species can tell a biologist a lot about the condition of an individual member of that species. I guess Canadian fisherman Norval Boufford wasn't counting on that on May 13, when he hauled an abnormally bulky salmon to a weigh-in station in St. Catharines, Ontario. Boufford was angling for the $500 prize given to the largest fish of the day during the annual linkurl:Salmon Masters Derby;http://www.salmonmastersderby.com/index.php on Lake Ontario, held from May to June. The fish Boufford lay on the scales weighed much more than its length predicted, arousing suspicion among derby officials, who summarily gutted the fish and found several pieces of metal that had been shoved down the fish's throat. Confronted with the revelation of his deception, Boufford grabbed his altered salmon and went on the lam. Derby organizers contacted the Niagara Regional Police, who launched an investigation on June 1. The police charged Boufford with one count of fraud under $5000, possibly the first case of such fishy misconduct ever in Ontario, according to the linkurl:__St. Catharines Standard__.;http://www.stcatharinesstandard.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1085548 The unethical angler is not in custody but will plead his case in court at a later date.

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