In April, scientists from the Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute (TNACI) drove hundreds of miles to the Wolf River in Shawano, Wisconsin. There, they joined representatives from Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s Warm Springs National Fish Hatchery in Georgia in collecting eggs and milt from wild Lake Sturgeon.
The results of their combined effort — thousands of fertilized eggs — will be sent to several propagation facilities, including TNACI. Over the summer, thousands of juveniles will be raised to a releasable size before being returned to native waterways like the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers, from which the species was entirely absent by the 1970s due to human activity and mismanagement.