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Sawfish Rostrum Tissue Collection

Photo credit: FSW science lab manager Rose Gilrane

Zirzow and her dedicated students have collected invaluable data from a sawfish rostrum. Smalltooth sawfish are primarily found in the region spanning from Charlotte Harbor to the Florida Keys. These tissue samples sent to Dr. Nicole Phillips and her team at the University of Southern Mississippi to undergo DNA extraction and analysis. The smalltooth sawfish, listed as critically endangered, possesses unique rostra that store crucial DNA information, offering insights into historical genetic diversity. Preserved rostra from both public and private collections can assist scientists in comparing current genetic diversity to that of the past, guiding conservation efforts.

If you possess or know the location of a sawfish rostrum, contact 1-844-4-SAWFISH.

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