Feds tout revival of fish that vexed Mountain Valley pipeline

By Michael Doyle | 04/01/2024 01:32 PM EDT

The Fish and Wildlife Service says the Roanoke logperch no longer needs federal protections.

A small fish, a Roanoke logperch, rests on two hands.

The Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed delisting the Roanoke logperch. NCWRC/Fish and Wildlife Service

The Roanoke logperch, a 6-inch-long fish that has at times complicated plans for the Mountain Valley pipeline, has now rebounded enough to warrant removal of Endangered Species Act protections, the Fish and Wildlife Service announced Monday.

Confined to only 14 streams when listed as endangered in 1989, the Roanoke logperch now inhabits upward of 31 streams throughout its range in Virginia and North Carolina, according to the federal agency.

“Over time, the Roanoke logperch has benefited from the protections and resources provided by state and federal laws and regulations,” FWS stated.


The agency added that the fish’s ESA listing “affected the course of large proposed and completed projects,” citing as one example a Roanoke River flood control project that “spanned multiple years” and was modified to minimize silt runoff, reduce the number of fish that were killed and maintain water quality.