U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The Giant Catfish Of Virginia

Aug 5, 2015

Up until the latter part of the 20th century, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and corresponding state agencies were practically in the business of introducing new fish to waterways for recreational and food purposes.

In the 1970s, blue catfish made it to Virginia’s rivers. The philosophy of introducing non-native fish is a thing of the past. But the catfish are still around, and some of them are now getting very, very large.

Catfish rushing for bread crumbs
Michael Khor / Flickr Creative Commons

Work on a $5.8 million bridge project has stopped after federal officials told an Oklahoma county that its construction method could harm a threatened fish species.

The Miami News-Record reports the Ottawa County Commission says work has been halted on the Stepps Ford bridge near Commerce.

J.N. Stuart /

An aerial survey shows good rains in parts of the five-state range of the federally threatened lesser prairie chicken have brought a 20 percent increase in the grouse's population from last year.

A release Tuesday from the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies says there were 22,415 lesser prairie chickens in this year's survey, up from 18,747 last year.

The increase came in the northeast Texas Panhandle, northwestern Oklahoma and south central Kansas — areas where more rain produced better prairie habitat. The bird is also in New Mexico and Colorado.

Larry Lamsa /

Gov. Sam Brownback says Kansas will join Oklahoma in suing the federal government over the addition of the lesser prairie chicken to its list of threatened species.

Brownback announced his state's response Friday during a news conference. Oklahoma sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in federal court last week, challenging the process under which the federal agency was considering the listing.

Inhofe, Lucas, Fallin Not Pleased With Prairie Chicken Move

Mar 28, 2014
USDAgov / Flickr Creative Commons

Oklahoma politicians have been quick to respond to news that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has decided to list the lesser prairie chicken as threatened.

The Obama administration announced Thursday it is placing the lesser prairie chicken on a list of threatened species. The move could affect oil and gas drilling, wind farms and other activities in Oklahoma and four other central and southwestern states.