Episode 604: Saving Sawfish
Strange and prehistoric-looking, Smalltooth Sawfish were once coveted by anglers as popular trophy fish. But habitat loss and overfishing have greatly reduced the animals’ range and landed them on the endangered species list in 2003. Historic records report sightings of the fish as far north as New York and west to the Texas-Mexico border. Today, the animals, which are related to the sharks, skates and rays, are limited to South Florida. Now scientists are conducting research to save the species. Little was known about Smalltooth Sawfish when they became endangered, so experts are conducting basic research about their life history, as well as tracking their movements using satellite and acoustic tags.
Meet the experts featured in this episode.
Changing Seas would like to thank the following individuals and institutions who kindly allowed their footage, images and other media to be used in this production:
David Morgan, Ph.D.
Gregg Poulakis, Ph.D.
Pew Oceans Commission
State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory
Tristan Guttridge, Ph.D.
U.S. Sawfish collected and filmed
under Guidelines & Authority of:
NMFS ESA Permit No. 15802
NMFS ESA Permit No. 17787
FL Permit No. SAL-14-1345SRP
FL Permit No. SAL-14-1292-SRP
NPS Permit No. EVER-2014-SCI-009
Florida Museum of Natural History