Asheville biologist Mark Cantrell named a national “recovery champion”
Announcement from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Asheville, North Carolina
Mark Cantrell's leadership, research, and collaboration with partners during dam relicensing processes, severe droughts, and projects to secure minimum flows in streams has benefited endangered and threatened aquatic species such as the Appalachian elktoe, spotfin chub, and chucky madtom and candidates such as the sicklefin redhorse. As a result of development—resulting in increased demand for water—southeastern aquatic ecosystems are among the most endangered in the country, and so are the fish and wildlife that depend on them. Through the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission dam relicensing process, Mark played a critical role in removing the Dillsboro Dam along the Tuckasegee River, creating a free-flowing river reach 29 miles long. He has also worked with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in recovery actions such as land acquisitions, surveys, and captive propagation projects.