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Monster Fish Episode Includes River Giants at the Tennessee Aquarium

6/24/2013 11:49:20 AM

The new season of Monster Fish on Nat Geo WILD kicks off on July 5th with an episode featuring giant catfish. National Geographic Fellow Dr. Zeb Hogan brought his crew to Chattanooga, lured by tales of Volkswagen-sized catfish. Hogan came face-to-face with a giant blue catfish in the Tennessee Aquarium’s River Giants exhibit and then spent some time noodling for massive blue catfish in the Tennessee River.


National Geographic Fellow Dr. Zeb Hogan films an episode of Monster Fish at the Tennessee Aquarium.

National Geographic Fellow Dr. Zeb Hogan films an episode of Monster Fish at the Tennessee Aquarium.


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NatGeo Wild Investigates Legendary Volkswagen-Sized Catfish
Program Features Tennessee Aquarium’s River Giants Exhibit


Chattanooga, Tenn. (June 24th, 2013) - The new season of Monster Fish on Nat Geo WILD kicks off on July 5th with an episode featuring giant catfish. National Geographic Fellow Dr. Zeb Hogan brought his crew to Chattanooga, lured by tales of Volkswagen-sized catfish. Hogan came face-to-face with a giant blue catfish in the Tennessee Aquarium’s River Giants exhibit and then spent some time noodling for massive blue catfish in the Tennessee River.

Zeb Hogan in the Tennessee Aquarium's River Giants exhibit.
Zeb Hogan meets one of the Tennessee Aquarium's blue catfish in the River Giants exhibit.

Hogan is a passionate freshwater conservationist with a mission to find, study and protect the remaining stocks of the world’s mega fishes. Giant freshwater fish species, like the Arapaima, Lake Sturgeon and Giant Pangassius Catfish featured in the Aquarium’s River Giants exhibit, are indicators of the environmental health of river systems. These large species are sensitive to water quality issues, habitat change and overfishing. Unfortunately, many giant fish are rapidly declining in the wild and are currently listed as threatened or endangered.

In each episode of Monster Fish, Hogan examines the environmental challenges these mega fish face. While some species are nearing extinction, Hogan remains hopeful for the future of colossal freshwater fish if conservation action is taken. He points to the Aquarium’s “Saving the Sturgeon” program

as a proof that nature can be helped. More than 125,000 Lake Sturgeon have been reintroduced into the Tennessee River since the Aquarium began working with others to restore this native fish. “The work that the Aquarium is doing with its partners is very important because we need success stories,” said Hogan. “People need to see that it is possible to protect and restore the big fish that remain.” 

TNACI director Dr. Anna George with Zeb Hogan at a Lake Sturgeon release on the Cumberland River near Nashville.

TNACI director Dr. Anna George with Zeb Hogan at a Lake Sturgeon release on the Cumberland River near Nashville.


This National Geographic news release has details about the Giant Catfish episode, which will air on Friday, July 5, at 10 p.m. ET. The 2014 season also features a 600-pound goldfish, “Salmonzilla” and “Green Goliath.”


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