Sturgeon found floating in Bay

Jonathan Riley, Digby Courier
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Fishermen found a dead Atlantic sturgeon floating upside down in the Bay of Fundy.

They were coming in from lobster fishing when they found the fish about 6.4 km off Hampton and decided to bring it into the wharf.

Fisheries officers Corey Webster and Anthonie Knevel picked up the fish on a routine patrol of the harbour.

The officers took a sample of the dorsal fin for research and measured the animal.

It weighs 110 lbs and is 2 metres long.

Atlantic Sturgeon typically grow to be 1.8 to 2.4 m in length and no more than three hundred pounds. Some specimens weighing over eight hundred pounds and nearly 4.5 m in length have been recorded.

Atlantic sturgeon don’t have normal scales; instead they have five rows of bony plates known as scutes.

The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) considers all of Canada’s five sturgeon species to be at some risk of extinction.

The Atlantic sturgeon is listed as “threatened”.

It lives and spawns near the Saint John River area in New Brunswick and another population group lives in the St. Lawrence.

“This large fish has experienced significant habitat degradation associated with pollution and hydro-electric dams and is known to spawn in two Canadian rivers where some harvest continues,” reads the COSEWIC assessment on the Atlantic sturgeon. “Considerable uncertainty exists regarding how much harvest this species can withstand given its late maturity and slow reproductive rate.”

Organizations: Department of Fisheries, DFO, Acadia University Bedford Institute of Oceanography

Geographic location: Canada, Bay of Fundy, Florida New Brunswick Saint John River United States

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