Ed Golson Outdoor Education

lake sturgeon

Scientific Name: Acipenser fulvescens             

Description: Sturgeons are very old type of fish.  They have been around since the time of the dinosaurs. They have a skeleton that is made up mostly of cartilage. Most other fish skeletons are made of bone. They have slender bodies that are covered in bony plates. Like catfish, sturgeons have whisker -like barbels around their mouths that help it detect food and push it into the mouth. Sturgeons have a small mouth without any teeth. 

Sturgeons can get very big and live a long time. They often grow to 6 feet in length and can become more than 8 feet long. They average about 200 pounds in weight, but can grow up to 800 pounds. They can live up to 100 years. A sturgeon was once caught that was estimated to be 154 years old! 

Habitat: Sturgeons can live in fresh waters all over North America, but are found mostly in Michigan and Wisconsin. They like to live in large shallow waters such as along the Great Lakes shoreline.  

Feeding: The sturgeon uses its barbels to search through the mud on the bottom of a lake to find insects, worms, and crayfish that may be buried there. It's amazing that such a large animal eats such small kinds of food. The sturgeon is actually a very slow eater and can live for several weeks without eating.

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