Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sharks Found in Tennessee River

Two sharks, measuring approximately 14" and weighing two lbs., were found dead in the Tennessee River within a short time of one another. The first was brought from the river, already dead, by a dog; the second was found washed-up on the bank several miles away. Both sharks were found by visitors to popular destination points along the river in Decatur County, TN.

While the species of the sharks is unknown, Keith Byrd of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, who is looking into the matter, says he hesitates to call them "baby" sharks. How the sharks got into the Tennessee River will likely never be known, but it is strongly suspected they were bought as bait in Florida or Mississippi and dumped in the river, perhaps as a joke. It is also possible they were someone's pets until they outgrew their aquarium home. However, Byrd says it is possible the sharks made it up the river either from the Gulf of Mexico or the Mississippi River.

Saltwater specimens have been found in freshwater Tennessee rivers before. A Florida manatee was discovered in the Wolf River Conservancy in Memphis, and blue crab and needlefish have been found in the Tennessee River in the past.

© C Harris Lynn, 2010

2 comments:

  1. One shark was found at Brodie's Landing, the other at Beech Bend. These are the most popular Tennessee River sites in Decatur County, TN.

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  2. A third shark was found near the Decatur County area, and an octopus was found near Chattanooga. Authorities still do not know how these creatures wound-up in TN waters.

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