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6 critically endangered sawfish found dead on side of road, $20K reward offered for information

Posted at 9:56 AM, Oct 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-22 09:56:55-04

NOAA's Office of Law Enforcement is offering a $20,000 reward after six critically endangered sawfish were found dead on the side of the road in the Everglades.

According to a release, an employee with the Everglades National Park reported the dead fish, along with two dead bonnethead sharks. NOAA says two of the sawfish were missing their saws, or rostra, and another had its meat removed.

NOAA says a sawfish biologist with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will try to determine the cause of death with a necropsy.

According to the release, smalltooth sawfish are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

Smalltooth Sawfish

The release says the loss of six sawfish is nearly equal to one mother's entire litter.

NOAA is asking anyone with information to contact them and are offering a reward of up to $20,000 for information that leads to a criminal conviction or assessment of a civil penalty. Call the NOAA Enforcement Hotline at 1-800-853-1964, tips can be anonymous.