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Knoxville nonprofit restoring freshwater fish across the Southeast

Conservation Fisheries works on the preservation, conservation and restoration of at-risk fish and other aquatic life. They’ve released more than 235,000 fish into waterways.
Conservation Fisheries works on the preservation, conservation and restoration of at-risk fish and other aquatic life.
Published: Jun. 15, 2022 at 8:40 AM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Conservation Fisheries is a nonprofit in Knoxville. They support fish populations put into imperiled status, meaning they’re at risk of extinction. The group’s aim is focused on the preservation, conservation and restoration of at-risk fish and other aquatic life.

J.R. Shute showed WVLT News around their hatchery, where they care for the rare fish, encourage them to spawn and raise fish from eggs. They have more than 11,000 fish in their care right now. The group will place the fish in waterways if they deem they could withstand the water conditions.

“This is a great place to live and we’re trying to protect it one species at a time,” said Shute.

Since formed in 1986, the group has released more than 235,000 fish into waterways in the Southeast. Right now they are focused on 19 different fish species including many darters, minnows and madtoms.

“What about when the next one goes extinct or the next one after that and things start to fall apart they are a good indicator of water quality,” said Shute.

Conservation Fisheries has hosted tours, floats, and other events. If you’d like to get involved or donate to their cause, you can find more information on their website.

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