Start receiving our award-winning magazine today!

Subscribe
  • The Alabama shad once migrated up rivers in Florida and other southeastern states by the millions. Today, runs have dwindled. But in Florida, Conservancy scientists and partners are researching ways to return shad to its former glory.
  • Dams provide a significant barrier to shad, stopping them on their migration. The dams aren't going away. And very little funding exists for shad conservation.
  • A lock holds the key: Shipping locks move not just boats, but also fish. The challenge: How can conservationists get shad to enter locks?
  • Shad are drawn upstream by running water, so getting them into the locks is easy. Conservancy staff and partners run water through PVC pipes twice a day, drawing fish into the locks. The water in the lock is raised, and shad exit upstream.
  • Shad research reveals the fish's migratory patterns, and whether they're using the locks. It also finds other fascinating information. Many shad, for instance, bear the bite marks of longnose gar, a common river fish.
  • Is it working? Researchers have found that runs of up to 100,000 shad have used the locks. It's a low-cost, low-tech way to restore fish populations--all possible because of the research into the shad's migratory habits.
The Nature Conservancy
Finding ways to return shad to its former glory

We’re Accountable

The Nature Conservancy makes careful use of your support.

More Ratings

x animal

Sign up for Nature eNews!

Sign Up for Nature e-News

Get our e-newsletter filled with eco-tips and info on the places you care about most.

Thank you for joining our online community!

We’ll be in touch soon with more Nature Conservancy news, updates and exciting stories.

Please leave this field empty

We respect your privacy. The Nature Conservancy will not sell, rent or exchange your e-mail address. Read our full privacy policy for more information. By submitting this form, you agree to the Nature.org terms of use.