ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A Maryland agency has been awarded more than $700,000 in federal funding to study and monitor the endangered Atlantic sturgeon.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources says the money will be used over three years to continue the department’s tagging and tracking of fall spawning Atlantic sturgeon in the Nanticoke River and Marshyhope Creek.

The federal grant is being provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

It will help scientists in Maryland and Delaware capture the fish, collect DNA samples and implant acoustic transmitters to help track their staging, spawning and migration patterns.

Until recently, Maryland’s Atlantic sturgeon population was believed to have been decimated.

In 2014, biologists discovered a fall spawning adult sturgeon population in the Nanticoke River. The appearance was the first in 40 years.

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