Atlantic sturgeon have survived for 200 million years, but today these ancient goliaths are on the brink of extinction. Human activities have caused Atlantic sturgeon numbers to decline by way of overfishing, loss of spawning habitat, and poor water quality.

In 2012 Atlantic sturgeon were listed as a federally Endangered Species, and renewed efforts began to aid the recovery of this important species. The National Marine Fisheries Service is moving forward with the next step to protect Atlantic sturgeon by designating critical habitat, or areas that are essential to the conservation of the species. Designating these areas is vital in order to rescue Atlantic sturgeon populations.

In the James River we are fortunate to still see signs of Atlantic sturgeon spawning migrations. James River Association and our partners have worked to restore habitat through creation of spawning reefs, to promote awareness, and to educate the public about this fascinating species. Formalizing critical habitat is necessary to keep sturgeon on a path to full recovery.

We need your help. Please ask the National Marine Fisheries Service to finalize the proposed rule as soon as possible.

Sample Comment:

The James River has a growing population of Atlantic Sturgeon, and scientists are learning more every season as they migrate up the river to spawn. Active efforts are being taken to create spawning reefs, promote awareness, and to educate about this fascinating species in the James. Critical habitat is necessary to keep sturgeon on a path to full recovery. Please formalize the proposed rule as soon as possible and designate critical habitat in the James.

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