Population characteristics of Atlantic Sturgeon and Shortnose Sturgeon in the Savannah River Georgia
Bahr, Derek Lawrence
MetadataShow full item record
Atlantic Sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus) and Shortnose Sturgeon (A. brevirostrum) once thrived along the Atlantic Coast of North America. Severe overfishing and habitat loss during the 1900s resulted in major population declines that led to the listing of both species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973. Presently, quantified abundance data is lacking for most systems, particularly at southerly latitudes. From 2013 to 2014, I collected mark-recapture data for both Shortnose and juvenile Atlantic Sturgeon occupying the Savannah River, Georgia. The results of this study provide the first quantified recruitment and abundance estimates for the Savannah River. These estimates are critical in evaluating the conservation status of these species and may allow researchers to evaluate trends in abundance and recruitment among and within rivers over time. Furthermore, the results of this study provide key information for proper management of these imperiled species in the southern portion of their range.