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The Endangered Smalltooth Sawfish - Fact Sheet

October 23, 2018

Sawfish are named for their saw-like snouts that are used for feeding and defense. Learn more about this critically endangered fish.

The smalltooth sawfish was the first marine fish to receive federal protection as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act in 2003. They were historically found in coastal waters from Texas to New York but the species is now only found with any regularity in Florida. Researchers believe the decline in this population was the result of overfishing (bycatch mortality), habitat loss, and the prolonged rate of reproduction for this species. While there are no conclusive population estimates, it is believed that the population is currently only a small fraction of its historic size. The last remaining stronghold for the population is found between Charlotte Harbor and the Florida Keys, including Everglades National Park.

Last updated by Southeast Regional Office on 03/08/2022