Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute

One of our own Defenders, Lee Friedlander is actively involved in a great organization called Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute. Their mission is to conserve native aquatic animals and their habitats through scientific research, ecosystem restoration, education programs, and public outreach.

One of their many programs focuses on establishing a self -sustaining population of Lake Sturgeon in Tennessee. A brief description of the program is listed below:

Lake Sturgeon
"Scientific name: Acipenser fulvescens
Size: To 8 ft., 300 lbs.
Range: eastern North America in the upper and middle Mississippi River basin, Great Lakes and Hudson Bay drainages, and upper Coosa River system
Habitat: Large lakes and rivers
Diet: Benthic species, such as mollusks, crayfish, and insect larvae
Conservation status: Endangered in Tennessee
Since 1998, TNACI has helped lead a statewide effort to establish a self-sustaining population of lake sturgeon in Tennessee. Due to the unique life history of lake sturgeon, which can live up to 150 years of age and reproduce at 10-26 years of age, this is a 25-year program. Initial reintroduction efforts were concentrated in the French Broad and Holston rivers, which join to form the Tennessee River closeby. We have restored over 70,000 lake sturgeon to the upper Tennessee River system in the first 10 years of the program. Since 2008, we have also worked with our partners to reintroduce lake sturgeon in the Cumberland River in Nashville. This program was recently recognized with awards from the Association for Zoos and Aquariums and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation."

Respect, Lee to you and the rest of the ream at TNACI for getting involved and making a difference out on the water. Be sure to check out the TNACI and follow their progress in tackling aquatic issues in Tenn.


Post a Comment