NPR logo Focusing On Fish In Knoxville, Tenn.

Focusing On Fish In Knoxville, Tenn.

A sicklefin redhorse being propagated for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Courtesy of Conservation Fisheries hide caption

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Courtesy of Conservation Fisheries

A sicklefin redhorse being propagated for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

Courtesy of Conservation Fisheries

I work for a company called Conservation Fisheries. It's a 20-year-old nonprofit based in Knoxville that focuses on the conservation of rare freshwater fish, such as chubs, darters, madtoms and minnows.

Our directors, J.R. Shute and Pat Rakes, began this organization to try to propagate what was believed to be an extinct species — the Smoky madtom that swims in the waters of the Smoky Mountain National Park. Today, the species seems to be thriving. And we now work with approximately 20 different species in states ranging from Alabama to New York.

Jessica Hendricks is a hatchery technician at Conservation Fisheries and listens to WUOT.