Fishing In Tennessee

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Federal Aid Projects

Where does the money come from and what is it used for?

The TWRA's fisheries management programs are funded from license sales and by federal aid money received through the Federal Aid to Sport Fish Restoration Program.

The federal aid money is generated by an excise tax paid by anglers on various kinds of fishing equipment and taxes collected on marine fuel.   The money is administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and can be spent only under their guidelines.

Currently, the TWRA projects funded by federal aid include:

  • operation of fish hatcheries
  • construction of Gibson County Lake
  • fishing piers designed to accommodate handicapped anglers
  • renovation and construction of boat ramps across the state
  • acquisition of stream access sites
  • evaluation of length limits and stocking success on reservoirs
  • stream habitat improvement projects
  • statewide construction and maintenance of fish attractors
  • habitat protection which includes investigating pollution problems
  • fish population surveys on reservoirs, lakes, and streams 

Fishing the Attractors

Region IV Fisheries, Partners Work to Help Imperiled Fish


The TWRA partnered with the USFWS Partners Program’s Tennessee Ecological Services Field Office, Fish Passage Program, Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership (SARP), and the Campbell County Highway Department to complete two culvert replacements on Coontail Branch. 

These projects help restore aquatic habitat connectivity for the federally threatened blackside dace and state listed In Need of Management Cumberland arrow darter. Both structures were rated as severe barriers utilizing SARP’s Barrier Assessment Tool and were replaced with bottomless box bridges, which allow the stream bottom to have natural substrate in it.  These bridges also benefit the county, creating stable crossing structures more resilient to flood effects. 

The Campbell County Highway Department presented TWRA and USFWS with a plaque thanking each Agency for their joint effort in culvert replacements of Baker Lane and Brahma Lane.