Little attention has been paid to the use of multi-sample batch-marking studies, as it is generally assumed that an individual's capture history is necessary for fully efficient estimates. However, recently, Huggins et al. (2010) present a pseudo-likelihood for a multi-sample batch-marking study where they used estimating equations to solve for survival and capture probabilities and then derived abundance estimates using a Horvitz–Thompson-type estimator. We have developed and maximized the likelihood for batch-marking studies. We use data simulated from a Jolly–Seber-type study and convert this to what would have been obtained from an extended batch-marking study. We compare our abundance estimates obtained from the Crosbie–Manly–Arnason–Schwarz (CMAS) model with those of the extended batch-marking model to determine the efficiency of collecting and analyzing batch-marking data. We found that estimates of abundance were similar for all three estimators: CMAS, Huggins, and our likelihood. Gains are made when using unique identifiers and employing the CMAS model in terms of precision; however, the likelihood typically had lower mean square error than the pseudo-likelihood method of Huggins et al. (2010). When faced with designing a batch-marking study, researchers can be confident in obtaining unbiased abundance estimators. Furthermore, they can design studies in order to reduce mean square error by manipulating capture probabilities and sample size.