Tags are the eyes and ears of Motus. Without them, we wouldn't have any data to speak of. Similarly, without accurate metadata we won't be able to make sense of the data we collect.
This section pertains to the management of tag metadata: i.e., the registration of tags and their deployments. To learn more about tags models and how to deploy them, see our chapter on tags:
In this chapter you will find:
Tags are the individual radio transmitters compatible with Motus which are manufactured by either CTT or Lotek. They each have a digitally encoded ID (manufacturer ID), a burst rate (a.k.a., 'burst interval' or 'period'), and a model.
A deployment is condsidered to be each instance when a tag was attached to animal and then released. Most tags are never recovered therefore most tags have only one deployment. Tag deployments record all the information regarding the animal that it was attached to, including: date/time of release, location of deployment, species, age, sex, weight, and any other metrics that can be provided.
Every time a Motus tag is deployed, this needs to be recorded in our database, otherwise there may be missing detections. This section covers the following topics:
All tags are automatically registered to your Motus project before shipment, regardless of the manufacturer (CTT or Lotek). However, you must tell the manufacturer your the Motus project ID for them to register the tag to the correct project. For more information, see Tag Registration.
A deployment is a single instance where a tag was attached to an animal (or was used in a "tag test"). The deployment begins when the animal is released. The deployment ends either: automatically (Motus calculates when the tag is expected to expire based on the tag model); or manually (when a collaborator recovers the tag from the animal).
Deployments are a necessary way for Motus to efficiently search for tag IDs within radio data. Without tags deployments, data will be missing.
While tag deployments are necessary for detections to occur, it is impractical to register deployments immediately after each one is deployed. Anticipated deployments are essentially placeholders or real deployments and begin on the earliest date which tags expect to be deployed.
Tags can be used to test whether a receiver or specific antennas are functioning as expected. However, we don't want these data to be included in analyses of animal movements, nor do we want them presented to the public since it can be confusing. To flag these deplyoments as test, check the box reading 'make this a test deployment' while registering your tag deployment and leave the 'Species' field blank.
Multiple tag deployments can be registered and/or modified at once using the tag deployment bulk editor. This can be found by clicking on "Upload tag deployments" under Tag Management. Follow the instructions on the page to upload tag deployments.