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Sawfish help

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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New Member
Jun 28, 2002
This thread is for all you water lovers out there, whether you're blowin bubbles or turnin blue while you hold your breath. There's a great program going on at Mote Marine Lab that focuses on gathering information about sawfish. The sawfish are about to be added to the endangered species list and could use a little help. Below is the information from Mote. This mostly relates to those of you in the U.S., but if you've seen them elsewhere I'm sure they'd appreciate the information.

The Center for Shark Research at Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota is in the midst of a study on the sawfish, Pristis pectinata. The study began in 1999 to address inadequacies
in the current state of knowledge about sawfish and to assist in the development of effective conservation strategies for the critically endangered species. One component of the project is to compile a sawfish sightings database. And that is where you can help. If anyone catches or encounters a sawfish, (while sampling, fishing, diving, boating) the researchers would like to know about it. Report as much information as is available
such as date and time of capture, location, habitat type, water quality, method of capture or encounter, and size of the sawfish. Any photos that are available from the encounter are also helpful. To report information regarding a sawfish capture or encounter email

sawfish@mote.org. Or log on to

www.mote.org/~colins/Sawfish/SawfishHomePage.html. Or call 941-388-4441 for more information.

I knew if there was one place where there might be a wealth of untapped information, it would be Deeper Blue. Thanks for your help everybody!

What's a sawfish?

Just in case you're not sure, I'll try posting a pic!


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I shot one as a kid (hey - go easy I was young and stupid and it thought it was a big flathead! only could see the eyes...)

Scared the piss out of me when the saw came out of the weeds thrashing. made a mess of my foot, big ouchy.

Now mounted in the School Science lab. was 112cm long. Shot at Qurayya Beach, Half Moon Bay, Saudi Arabia.

Still feel bad about it.....

Good question Cliff! Guess I should have explained that. It's a sawfish that our staff caught in the Everglades. When the sawfish are caught they're brought onto, or next to, the boat depending on their size. When next to the boat they have to be restrained at the saw and tail to prevent injury to either the fish or the people working on it. Then they're measured, the teeth are counted, the sex is recorded, and they are tagged (you'll notice the tags on the dorsal fins). Once all the information is collected they are released.

If they are caught again and someone reports the tag number, then the scientists can learn more about their movements. In some cases a satellite tag is attached (first dorsal fin - it looks a bit like a microphone). That tag is set to break off at a certain time after days, weeks, or months. A slight electrical charge is sent through the attachment point and when combined with saltwater causes the wire of the tag to break. The tag then floats to the surface, sends information to a satellite and the satillite sends all the data to the scientist via e-mail. Pretty slick!

This particular sawfish also had a previous entanglement with some monofilament. Towards the base of the saw you can see the damage that remained from the monofilament after it was removed. The fish lost one tooth on each side as a result.

Hey Willer, interesting story. We all make mistakes. Sounds like you still have some scars as a memory!

Thanks for the interest guys!

hey M-2,
nice picture, i resized it for you so people with a slow internet connection wouldnt have a problem seeing it

have a good day
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