Fisheries biologist Jimmy Evans recently was honored with the “Career Contributions Award” by the Georgia Chapter of the American Fisheries Society, announces the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division.
This award honors individuals who have made numerous and significant contributions towards the advancement of fisheries research and management in Georgia over the course of their career.
The mission of the American Fisheries Society is to improve the conservation and sustainability of fishery resources and aquatic ecosystems by advancing fisheries and aquatic science and promoting the development of fisheries professionals.
“Jimmy Evans’ body of work is wholly impressive,” said John Biagi, Wildlife Resources Division’s chief of fisheries management. “He has done studies, conducted research and written publications on so many fisheries species and topics, but perhaps his crowning jewel is the work he has done to re-discover the robust redhorse in the state of Georgia.”
Evans, a fisheries biologist with the Wildlife Resources Division for 26 years, has developed, led and assisted with many outstanding achievements. For example, he developed a statewide grass carp stocking model, took a lead role in development of an anadromous species management and restoration plan for the Altamaha, and wrote several publications on topics ranging from aquatic plant management to surveying a largemouth bass fishery.
Evans’ discovery, in 1991, of a robust redhorse downstream of Sinclair Dam on the Oconee River was one of the first sightings since the species was described by naturalist Edward Cope in 1870. He was quick to realize that this Oconee population was perhaps the last remaining of the species and based on his collection efforts and research, he saw the need for immediate conservation measures.
Evans’ efforts to conserve the species included working with Georgia Power to protect spawning areas, organizing a Robust Redhorse Conservation Committee in 1995 and providing guidance on effective sampling techniques to collect robust redhorse from two other rivers. His meticulous research and conservation work has made a huge difference to the continued survival of this imperiled species.
For more information on the “Career Contributions” award, visit the Georgia Chapter American Fisheries Society website at www.gaafs.org . For more information on fishing in Georgia, visit www.gofishgeorgia.com .