The ecological effectiveness of widespread and costly aquatic restoration efforts is often unknown. We reviewed studies incorporating electronic-tagging techniques (including radio, acoustic, satellite, biologging, and passive integrated transponder tags) into restoration-monitoring programs and discuss novel uses of these technologies and experimental design considerations. We found 25 studies, mostly published after 2005. Most were focused on salmonids or monitored the residency of species at artificial reefs. Few studies used site-level replication or data collected prior to restoration or at control sites, which limits the usefulness of their results for evaluating restoration effectiveness. The use of electronic tags and related sensors (e.g., temperature, depth) can reveal how habitats are used and their associated bioenergetic costs or benefits. These technologies are focused on individual- and population-level responses and complement traditional methods of assessing abundance, richness, and community composition but must be deployed in conjunction with well-designed experiments to truly better inform evaluations of restoration effectiveness.
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Vol. 63 • No. 5