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Tuesday, August 24, 2010 - 7:27am

Endangered Darter Fish Found in Coosawatee

Scientists have found some endangered fish in a north Georgia river where they’ve never been spotted before.

Wildlife biologist Brett Albanese with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources says he and other scientists recently caught the federally endangered amber darter in the Coosawatee River and also the freckled darter which is endangered in the state.

"The amazing thing is we caught another species that have never been caught in that river before, so usually you don’t make those kinds of discoveries in one day so we felt really lucky," says Albanese.

The fish had only been spotted in the Conasauga and Etowah rivers in the state until now, and more studies will determine if this was just a single find or if there’s a whole population that lives in the Coosawatee.

The Army Corps of Engineers is currently revising its water control manual for Carters Lake upstream. The research will inform their decisions on how much water to release from the lake.

"The biggest potential here is another reason to try to work with the Army Corps of Engineers," says Albanese," to try to get a flow regime that protects native species in that reach downstream of Carters lake."

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