Saving the Sturgeon in Tennessee

REPORTING:  RABBIT ZIELKE

Lake Sturgeon

The Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute will be celebrating a decade of work with “Saving the Sturgeon” with a special release of these endangered fish into the Tennessee River.  The Lake Sturgeon has been over fished to harvest caviar and changes in the habitat along the rivers of the South Eastern United States have pushed this fish to near extinction.  The Conservation Institute works with several agencies to restore habitats for the lake sturgeon.  Once the rivers and waterways are determined to be safe for the fish, the Institute will reintroduce young sturgeon to the environment.

Wildlife agencies in several states work together to breed and raise the young sturgeon to prepare them for their return to rivers.  Most of the sturgeon are released at the age of 6 months.

Beluga Sturgeon

The Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute raises some of their young sturgeon for six to seven years to give the larger fish a better chance for survival.   Once released, the Institute will monitor the fish as they travel through southern waterways.

The sturgeon release will take place Thursday, May 13th, 11:00 am at the kayak launch under the Market Street Bridge in Coolidge Park.  If you miss that opportunity, you can always stop by the Tennessee Aquarium to see several examples of this nearly extinct species and even pet a few.

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