Sawfish, listed as critically endangered, are on the verge of extinction with an estimation of population being between 200 and 5,000 adults left in the world with virtually all of the population being in Florida.
With populations being so low, it is critical that the each animal is given full protections but this is not always the case. Found on the side of the road between Everglades City and Chokoloskee Island, Florida, seven sawfish were found dead.
Two the the animals were found missing their rostra (saw) and another had its meat removed leaving only the carcass.
A sawfish biologist from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission will performa. necropsy on the animals to determine cause of death.
NOAA officials seek information from anyone who may have details about this incident and are offering a reward up to $20,000 for information leading to a criminal conviction or the assessment of a civil penalty. Please call the NOAA Enforcement Hotline at 1-800-853-1964. Tips may be left anonymously.