Lake Sturgeon Biology
Lake sturgeon are the longest lived Great Lakes fish species and can attain ages up to 100 years. Lake sturgeon can grow to over 8 feet and weigh up to 300 pounds. Lake sturgeon have no scales but are covered by five rows of bony scutes on the back and sides. Lake sturgeon have a low reproductive rate and may not begin to spawn until they are 15-25 years old. Male lake sturgeon reach sexual maturity at 15-20 years of age, and males spawn on average every other year. Once females mature at about 20-25 years of age, they spawn on average every three to four years. These characteristics reduce the rate of recovery of lake sturgeon, which has been designated as a protected species throughout much of their native range. Lake sturgeon prefer large shallow lakes and rivers and near shore habitats in the Great Lakes. They feed by using their protruding mouth to suction up bottom dwelling organisms like crayfish and other crustaceans as well as insect larvae.