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March Staff Notes for Tishomingo NFH
Southwest Region, March 31, 2006
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Paddlefish Eggs in Hatching Jar by Kerry Graves, Tishomingo NFH on 3/30/06.
Paddlefish Eggs in Hatching Jar by Kerry Graves, Tishomingo NFH on 3/30/06. - Photo Credit: n/a
Paddlefish Fry by Kerry Graves, Tishomingo NFH on 3/31/06.
Paddlefish Fry by Kerry Graves, Tishomingo NFH on 3/31/06. - Photo Credit: n/a

Paddlefish season has begun and it appears to be the beginning of another successful rearing season. Over 100,000 Red River paddlefish fry are now feeding and well on their way to growing to a stocking size of 14+ inches by early fall. Collection and spawning of wild broodstock from the Red River was a cooperative effort among hatchery staff, the Oklahoma Fishery Resources Office, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, and Natchitoches National Fish Hatchery in Louisiana. Low flows in the upper Red River necessitated collecting broodstock farther down the river in Arkansas and Louisiana.

Fish captured in Arkansas were transported back to Tishomingo NFH for spawning while those captured in Louisiana were spawned at the Natchitoches NFH. The fry from Natchitoches were then transferred back to Tishomingo NFH for rearing. The fry will be reared for a stocking commitment in Lake Texoma, an impoundment on the Red River, as a part of an effort to re-establish a self-sustaining population in that reservoir. Paddlefish were considered to be extirpated from waters above the impoundment in the 1950s.

Arkansas River paddlefish broodstock were collected from an impoundment in the Arkansas River drainage by the Oklahoma Fishery Resources Office and the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. These fish were transported to the Tishomingo NFH for spawning. Currently, over 50,000 paddlefish eggs are in the final stages of incubation. Arkansas River paddlefish will be reared to meet a stocking commitment in the John Redmann Reservoir in Kansas.


Contact Info: Martin Valdez, 505-248-6599, martin_valdez@fws.gov



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