TWRA Forms Partnership With Maryville High School Bass Fishing Team For Invasive Species Awareness

Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Maryville High School Rebels bass fishermen Tavon Russell and Paten Sweeney with their fifth-place limit of 10.83 pounds.  Bass Pro Shops professional bass fishermen Woo Daves and Brad Burkhart are in the background.
Maryville High School Rebels bass fishermen Tavon Russell and Paten Sweeney with their fifth-place limit of 10.83 pounds. Bass Pro Shops professional bass fishermen Woo Daves and Brad Burkhart are in the background.

TWRA and the Maryville High School Rebels bass fishing team partnered to create awareness to help prevent the spread of Aquatic Nuisance Species in Tennessee.

In simple terms, ANS are organisms introduced into new habitats that produce harmful impacts on aquatic natural resources and on human use of these resources. 

ANS are an important issue that has become a major concern in Tennessee’s waterways as they are showing up in new areas across the state.  While there are over 55 different ANS in Tennessee, the two that are getting the most attention are zebra mussels and Asian carp.  Both species wreak havoc on the ecosystems when introduced into new bodies of water.

TWRA saw the opportunity to help promote youth fishing and ANS awareness through the first ever Bass Pro Shop’s High School Fishing Challenge, which was open to all area high school fishing teams.  The tournament series just concluded with the championship on Douglas Lake this past Saturday. 

TWRA’s Statewide Hatchery and ANS Coordinator David Roddy funded the project through grant money dedicated to ANS awareness.  The Bass Rebels were randomly selected by the TWRA and were provided with ANS information and outfitted with inflatable life jackets and hats bearing the ANS logo.  The team placed ANS decals on their boats and educated the public about simple ways to help prevent their spread. 

David Clark, who is a teacher at Coulter Grove Intermediate School, sponsored the Maryville High School fishing team and was grateful for the opportunity by stating, “Our club was honored to partner with the TWRA to promote the Aquatic Nuisance Program.  It was a great educational opportunity for our student anglers to be a part of this program that has a lot of science concepts to it.  The TWRA wants to educate the public by bringing awareness through programs like ANS and the Wear It program and it was a great partnership to involve our students in this project.  They are the future to protecting our outdoor resources.”  Maryville’s fishing team members included Jackson Lindley, Paten Sweeney, Tavon Russell, Dalton Price, Brooke Clark, and Austin Ensley. 

The Rebels fared well in the tournament series by making the final cut in which the top ten teams fished Douglas Lake and weighed their catch at Bass Pro Shops, Seviervilleon Saturday.  The Rebels weighed a limit of five bass totaling 10.83 lbs., which was good enough to land them in fifth place.  Claiming the top spot was Craig Wilson and Spencer St. John from Campbell County H.S. with a bag of five bass totaling 16.65 lbs.

For more information on ANS in Tennessee, visit: http://www.protectyourwaters.net or http://www.state.tn.us/twra/pdfs/aquaticplan.pdf.

For more information on the Bass Pro Shops High School Fishing Challenge, visit: http://blogs.basspro.com/blog/bass-pro-shops-seviervillekodak-tn/bass-pro-shops-high-school-bass-fishing-challenge.

Campbell County High School fishermen Craig Wilson (left) and Spencer St. John (right) with their first-place bag, weighing 16.65 pounds. Bass Pro Shops professional bass fishermen Woo Daves and Brad Burkhart are in the background.
Campbell County High School fishermen Craig Wilson (left) and Spencer St. John (right) with their first-place bag, weighing 16.65 pounds. Bass Pro Shops professional bass fishermen Woo Daves and Brad Burkhart are in the background.

Alexander: Tennessee Receives $10 Million For Foothills Parkway To Improve Access To The Smokies

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said that a $10 million federal transportation grant he supported will help complete a 16-mile section of the Foothills Parkway in Blount and Sevier counties, improving access to the federally owned and operated Great Smoky Mountains National Park and “enhancing tourism and economic development” in East Tennessee. “I grew up hiking, ... (click for more)

5th Permit For 2016 Elk Hunt To Be Auctioned On Ebay, July 28-Aug. 7

The fifth permit for participation in Tennessee’s eighth managed elk hunt will be awarded to the successful bidder in an eBay auction to be held from July 28-Aug 7. Proceeds from the auction benefit the state’s elk restoration program. Since the elk hunt was implemented in 2009, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) has donated a permit to a Non-Governmental Organization ... (click for more)

Morning Fire Destroys Vacant Valleybrook House; 2 Firefighters Suffer Burns

Fire destroyed a vacant house in the Valleybrook Community early Thursday morning. The Chattanooga Fire Department received the alarm at 5:35 a.m. and responded to a reported fire at the Valleybrook Golf and Country Club off Hixson Pike. When the first firefighters from Station 19 arrived on the scene, they could not find the fire. Lt. Scott Sheets with Quint 19 said that ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Whiskey Company To Construct Large Distillery At Former Site Of Newton Chevrolet

The Chattanooga Whiskey Company has begun construction on a larger production distillery in the former Newton Chevrolet property at the corner of MLK Boulevard and Riverfront Parkway near the Tennessee River. Once fully operational, the Riverfront Parkway facility will be capable of producing upwards of 14 (53-gallon) barrels per day, making it one of the largest craft bourbon ... (click for more)

Judge Steelman Was Unfairly Criticized In Handling Of School Bus Driver Rape Case - And Response

We are blessed to have freedom of speech in our society, but I am always amazed at the number of folks who voice such strong antagonistic opinions about things without any apparent first-hand knowledge.   As any who wish to criticize the system should know, people get arrested and charged for criminal offenses every day.  The ultimate charge and penalty which results ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Vote For Rhonda Thurman

After studying the Hamilton County School Board quite harshly during the last seven most-tumultuous months in its history, it is only proper that I share my belief that Rhonda is its Most Valuable Player. Four of the school board’s nine members are up for re-election, with Rhonda facing capable opponents in Jason Moses and Dr. Patti Skates in District 1, but let’s never forget that ... (click for more)