Page 32 - South Mississippi Living - August, 2021
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CLASS: Osteichthyes FAMILY: Acipenseridae GENUS: Acipenser SPECIES: oxyrinchus desotoi
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• Gulf sturgeon are big fish! They are six to eight feet long and weigh about 200 pounds.
• Adult Gulf sturgeon spend the winter in estuaries, barrier island passes, and the Gulf of Mexico. In the summer, they move to rivers and streams to spawn (lay eggs).
• Gulf sturgeon return to the same stream where they were born to lay their eggs as an adult.
• They can jump six feet out of the water! Scientists think sturgeon might do this as a way of communicating with each other.
• Gulf sturgeon are bottom feeders and use whisker-like barbels on their snout to find food items including small shrimp, crabs, and marine worms. Then, they suck their food up like a vacuum.
• Because of historic overfishing, damming of streams, and water pollution, Gulf sturgeon are listed as a Federally threatened species.
• Sturgeons are an ancient group of fish – they have been around since the time of dinosaurs.
story by Christina Mohrman
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32 | August 2021 | SOUTH MISSISSIPPI Living

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