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Six smalltooth sawfish found killed in Florida; $25,000 reward offered for clues

An Everglades National Park employee recently reported the dead sawfish and two dead bonnethead sharks along a causeway south of Everglades City.
A smalltooth sawfish is shown in this file photo. Wildlife officials and a non-profit group are offering $25,000 for information about six critically endangered smalltooth sawfish found killed in Florida.  [Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission]
A smalltooth sawfish is shown in this file photo. Wildlife officials and a non-profit group are offering $25,000 for information about six critically endangered smalltooth sawfish found killed in Florida. [Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission]
Published Oct. 23, 2020

EVERGLADES CITY — Wildlife officials and a non-profit group are offering $25,000 for information about six critically endangered smalltooth sawfish found killed in Florida.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Thursday that it would pay up to $20,000 for information leading to a criminal conviction or civil penalty. The Center for Biological Diversity announced an additional $5,000 reward.

An Everglades National Park employee recently reported the dead sawfish and two dead bonnethead sharks along a causeway south of Everglades City, NOAA said. Two of the sawfish were missing their saw-like bills, called rostra. One other had its meat removed.

A sawfish primarily uses its rostrum for sensing and hunting prey. The smalltooth sawfish is one of five sawfish species worldwide and the only one still found in U.S. waters.

Anyone with information about the dead sawfish should call the NOAA Enforcement Hotline at 1-800-853-1964.