Tennessee football may be stuck the SEC basement, but when it comes to mudbug diversity, we’re #1!

That’s right, Tennessee is home to seventy-eight—possibly more—different species of crayfish. That is quite a few more species than any other state can boast.

Tennessee has more crayfish species than any other stateAccording to T.W.R.A. officials Bart Carter and Carl Williams, our state’s waters and land are home to a wide variety of crustaceans that our gamefish dearly love to see on their dinner plates. Many of these species are either state or federally protected. In some cases, that’s due to declining populations or diminished habitat, but some crayfish make the list because isolated Tennessee streams are the only places in the world that they have been found to exist.

 On this week’s Southern Woods and Waters we’re heading up the creek. Seven Mile Creek, that is; a small, clear stream that flows  across limestone beds near T.W.R.A.’s headquarters just south of downtown Nashville. Bart will introduce us to one endangered crayfish species known as the “Nashville Crayfish.”

Also, you fishing enthusiasts, bring your pen and pad, because we’re going to uncover some regional and seasonal crayfish color schemes that might just make your next trip on the water more productive.

Show your Southern PrideOne more thing: if you happen to run across one of the many employees of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, tell them thanks for a job well done.

See you Thursday at 8 p.m. on News Channel 5+ (Comcast channel 50 or 250).