- Associated Press - Monday, May 18, 2015

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) - As part of an effort to re-establish endangered lake sturgeon, Chattanooga’s Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute has begun tracking their movements with surgically implanted sonic tags.

According to the aquarium, the prehistoric-looking giant fish were once abundant in the Tennessee River but fell victim to overfishing, pollution and habitat destruction. They disappeared from the area by 1961.

Over the past 15 years, the aquarium has released more than 150,000 lake sturgeon into the Tennessee River and 30,000 into the Cumberland River, but scientists have had trouble tracking the success of the reintroduction program.

The sonic tags broadcast information to researchers about the sturgeons’ movements as well as water depth and temperature.

Eight sonic-tagged sturgeons were released Friday, bringing the total number of tagged fish swimming between Knoxville and Chattanooga to 57.

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