TFWC Receives Updates On Asian Carp And Duck Hunters Survey

Friday, October 23, 2020

An update on Asian carp, results of a recent Tennessee duck hunters survey, and annual divisional awards presentations were among the business conducted at the October meeting of the Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission.

The one-day meeting was held Friday in the Tom and Wendy Beasley Education Center at the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s Buffalo Ridge Refuge. It was the TFWC’s first formal meeting at Buffalo Ridge Refuge which comprises about 2,000 acres in southern Humphreys County.

Cole Harty, TWRA’s Aquatic Nuisance Species Coordinator, provided an update on Asian carp. There has been no significant change in carp distribution since the previous update. TWRA and Tennessee Valley Authority fisheries crews conducted concentrated surveillance in East Tennessee reservoirs and tailwaters and did not encounter any silver, bighead, or black carp.

It was reported that TWRA has been awarded nearly $1.7 million from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to conduct carp control and monitoring in the coming year. This is a substantial increase from previous years that will advance the agency’s capacity to control and monitor carp populations. Asian carp work will be conducted in the Tennessee and Cumberland basin as well as Reelfoot Lake. Plans include providing incentives for the commercial removal of Asian carp, monitoring population characteristics, tracking movement to direct control efforts, and working with state and federal partners to make informed decisions about any future barrier placement.

As requested by the TFWC, results of a recent survey of Tennessee duck hunters were presented. The survey was conducted by the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and shared by Wildlife and Forestry Division Chief Joe Benedict. Results provided insight on how to increase hunter opportunity, how to improve the draw process for hunters, and the best way to be equitable and fair in utilizing public lands for duck hunting.

The TFWC passed Tennessee’s threatened, endangered, and in-need of management lists. The lists are required to be reviewed every two years.

The Wildlife and Forestry Division recognized its Wildlife Technician and Wildlife Biologist/Manager of the Year. The Biologist of the Year winner is Luke Hadden, who works as a wildlife manager with the forestry unit on Catoosa Wildlife Management in the Upper Cumberland Area. Bobby Buttram is the Wildlife Technician of the Year and also is part of the forestry unit at Catoosa WMA.  He is a 30-year veteran.

Wildlife Manager Brandon Gilbert of Wolf River WMA received the Firebird Award. The National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to habitat restoration of bobwhite quail populations. Appreciation awards were presented to West Tennessee CWD partners and processors Chad and Sadonna Cardwell and Barry and Cindy Clampitt for their contributions in the CWD campaign.

The Boating and Law Enforcement Division announced a pair of annual awards. Wally Lessig was named the TWRA Part-Time Boating Officer of the Year. He serves in TWRA Region IV in District 41 which encompasses 10 counties in East Tennessee. Dustin Buttram is the Boating Officer of the Year. He serves in Region III’s District 31 which contains Center Hill Lake, Dale Hollow Lake, and the Caney Fork River.

Retiring Agency pilot Barbara Shaffer was honored. She served as TWRA’s lead pilot for 22 years. She played an instrumental role in activities across multiple divisions within the agency which included wildlife counts and surveys, fish transportation, and law enforcement details.


Tennessee To Receive Funding From Great American Outdoors Act

TWRA Announces Application For Grants For Hispanic Communities To Engage In Fishing

Master Gardeners Offers Live Wreath Class Via Zoom Saturday


Senator Lamar Alexander said on Friday that Tennessee will receive significant funding this year from the Great American Outdoors Act – legislation the senator sponsored and the president signed ... (click for more)

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is announcing it is accepting grant applications for fishing programs, activities, and classes which bring fishing programs to educate and engage Hispanic ... (click for more)

The Master Gardeners of Hamilton County, in association with the University of Tennessee Extension, continue their public gardening classes online via Zoom during the current pandemic. Experienced ... (click for more)



Outdoors

Tennessee To Receive Funding From Great American Outdoors Act

Senator Lamar Alexander said on Friday that Tennessee will receive significant funding this year from the Great American Outdoors Act – legislation the senator sponsored and the president signed into law that will cut in half maintenance backlog in our national parks, national forests and other public lands. The new law also fully funds the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) ... (click for more)

TWRA Announces Application For Grants For Hispanic Communities To Engage In Fishing

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is announcing it is accepting grant applications for fishing programs, activities, and classes which bring fishing programs to educate and engage Hispanic communities. The George H.W. Bush Vamos A Pescar Education Fund was established in 2014 by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation. With the help of generous donations by Bass ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Tennessee Has 4,404 New COVID Cases, 53 More Deaths

The number of coronavirus cases in Tennessee is 352,376 on Thursday with 4,404 new cases. There have been 53 more deaths from the virus, for a total of 4,519, said state Health Department officials. The state currently has 2,178 people hospitalized from the virus, 5 less than on Wednesday. There have been 312,885 people who have recovered from the virus in Tennessee (89 ... (click for more)

Georgia Has 26 New Coronavirus Deaths, 2,946 New Cases

Georgia state health officials reported on Thursday there have been 26 additional deaths due to the coronavirus. The current total is 8,716. There were 2,946 new cases as that total reached 413,909 confirmed cases of coronavirus. Hospitalizations are at 34,587, up 174 from Wednesday. Here are the numbers by county: Catoosa County: 1,997 cases, up 25; 29 deaths; ... (click for more)

Opinion

County Employees Need A Bonus Too

A few weeks ago we learned that Sheriff Jim Hammond was asking for a second raise. Earlier this year Hamilton County employees were notified that "due to COVID-19" there would be no raises for employees of any kind this year. I guess Mr. Hammond didnt get that memo about no raises. Why is it that some employees will be getting a raise and others are not? That doesn't really ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Second-Best Meal

Just in the nick of time comes a prudent health advisory for this holiday weekend: If you happen to see 15-to-20 cars gather at one house in your neighborhood, immediately rush to your refrigerator and drink a large glass of milk as fast as you can get it down. You’ll be able to sense the cold milk with your teeth, which is why drinking milk is one of the best things you can do ... (click for more)