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  • A prehistoric looking fish with spines down its back and sides.
    Information icon Lake sturgeon. Photo by USFWS.

    New report looks at the state of American fish

    December 20, 2008 | 2 minute read

    Transcript Welcome to the Southern Appalachian Creature Feature. This week, we’ll look at the state of fish populations, both in the Southern Appalachians and across the nation. The slender chub is a tiny fish known only from the Clinch, Powell, and Holston Rivers of eastern Tennessee and southwest Virginia. It hasn’t been seen in the wild since 2002, despite searches by some of the best fish biologists in the region.  Learn more...

  • Three women in wet suits snorkeling in a shallow river.
    Oconaluftee River snorkelers. Photo by Gary Peeples, USFWS.

    Endangered Species Day 2008

    December 6, 2008 | 3 minute read

    Transcript Good morning and welcome to the Southern Appalachian Creature Feature. This week we’re going to look at the recent Endangered Species Day celebration and the ongoing challenge to protect endangered species in the Southern Appalachians. There weren’t a lot of takers for snorkeling. It was the North Toe River, on Mitchell/Yancey County line and ten students from the local high school’s Eco-Club were in the river with Fish and Wildlife Service biologists, looking for mussels.  Learn more...

  • Sunset over waterbody.
    Information icon Night falls at Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. Photo by Joy Campbell of Okefenokee Adventures.

    Toe River Valley River Trail

    November 30, 2008 | 3 minute read

    Transcript Greetings and welcome to the Southern Appalachian Creature Feature. Today we’ll examine an effort to increase accessibility to one of the most beautiful corners of the Southern Appalachians. In Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife refuge, there is little hiking, simply because there is little dry earth, however, visitors routinely traverse the refuge, camping in it’s backcountry and enjoying the alligators, turtles, and birds this southeast Georgia wilderness offers. Instead of being laced with hiking trails, the area is laced with paddling trails, with backcountry visitors paddling through the swamp from wooden camping platform to wooden camping platform.  Learn more...

  • Biologists collect bright yellow eggs from a half dozen brownish red fish.
    Fertilizing sicklefin redhorse eggs for captive rearing. Photo by Mark Cantrell, USFWS.

    Sicklefin redhorse conservation

    November 23, 2008 | 3 minute read

    Transcript On the bank of the Little Tennessee River, downstream from the town of Franklin, biologists squeeze tiny yellow eggs from a fish into a plastic bag. Unlike caviar, these eggs won’t be eaten, but rather trucked to a lab in Knoxville, Tenn., to join an effort to keep a rare fish off the endangered species list. The fish is a sicklefin redhorse, a recently discovered species found only in the western tip of North Carolina and a small bit of North Georgia.  Learn more...

  • Biologists look at clippings of an endangered plant
    Mary Frazer and Dennis Herman looking at Virginia spiraea. Photo by Gary Peeples, USFWS.

    Biologists search for rare plant along the Little Tennessee River

    November 16, 2008 | 3 minute read

    Transcript Good morning and welcome to the Southern Appalachian Creature Feature. This week, we’ll look at an effort to track an imperiled plant known from the banks of the Little Tennessee River. In late May, a team of biologists canoeing the Little Tennessee River discovered two new patches of the federally-protected Virginia spiraea plant growing on the river’s banks. Virginia spiraea was listed as threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1990, and today it’s found in seven states across Appalachia from West Virginia to Georgia, including seven counties in North Carolina.  Learn more...

  • A brown bird with purple wing tips floats on semi-frozen water.
    Female wood duck at Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge. Photo © Quincey Banks.

    Water Quality Woes in Western North Carolina

    November 9, 2008 | 3 minute read

    Transcript Good morning and welcome to the Southern Appalachian Creature Feature. This week, we’re going to look at the precarious situation of our Southern Appalachian rivers. When you have a child, certain sacrifices are made, some of which are temporary. Since our daughter’s birth more than two years ago, our canoe, which used to get frequent use, languished in the basement, getting used only as a convenient basement shelf.  Learn more...

  • Two students wearing waders in a stream inspect a seine.
    Western North Carolina’s Pigeon River is home to the endangered Appalachian elktoe mussel. Photo by Gary Peeples.

    Muddy Sneakers program aims to get kids outside

    November 2, 2008 | 2 minute read

    Transcript Greetings and welcome to the Southern Appalachian Creature Feature – this week we’ll look at new movement to get kids outdoors. The early-morning rumble of diesel school buses echoes across the mountains again as another summer comes to a close and students head to school in stiff new jeans and spotless sneakers. Talk to a teacher about their work and the conversation eventually winds its way to testing and how it defines what gets taught.  Learn more...

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