Digital Fish Scale Photography

27 Mar 2014

The SFCC have identified a cost-effective method for producing high resolution fish scale photographs

By utilising new Digital SLR Camera Technology in conjunction with traditional miscoscopes an effective method of miscoscope photography has been developed. Using a microscope lens adapter, modern Digital SLR cameras can be used to photograph fish scales through the microscope as seen in the above photograph of a 55lbs 4 sea-winter salmon courtesy of Tweed Foundation. In addition, 'live view' video can be used to present the microscope image on a large screen or projector.

As can be seen in the photograph, Ronald Campbell and Ross Gardiner also utilised this technique during the recent SFCC scale reading course for teaching and discussion purposes. Students were able to read scales as a group using a pointer to identify fish life histories.

The SFCC are currently refining the technique for use in both trinocular microscopes and older Projectina microscopes featuring the standard 23mm or 30mm diameter head tube. It is hoped that scale photographs can increasingly be used for communication, archiving and teaching purposes.

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Scottish Fisheries Co-Ordination Centre (SFCC), Marine Scotland Freshwater Laroratory, Faskally, Pitlochry, Perthshire PH16 5LB

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