Thursday, April 24, 2014

Sturgeon Spawning Season In Wisconsin

The sturgeon are spawning again in this area.  I wrote about sturgeon spearing and a little bit about the spawning process last year. Click on this link if you want to read more about the sturgeon.

We knew it was getting close to sturgeon spawning season 2014.  Then last night my daughter got a call from her neighbor.  He said the DNR was down by the Fox River netting sturgeon to tag.  They were tagging the fish so their behavior and habits can be monitored.  Since her son is fascinated with wildlife, fish and prehistoric creatures, they went to see the process.  He got to touch the sturgeon and ask questions. I bet all of his classmates are getting stories today.

They use a net to capture the sturgeon.

They take measurements of the fish.

Here they are putting a device under the skin so they can keep track of that individual fish.

Being a little bit jealous that my daughter and grandson got to participate in such a fun adventure, we took a little trip to see if we could also see a sturgeon.  We didn't quite know where to look, but we went to the city park on the Fox River.  There was a policeman walking along the trail so we asked him if he had seen any.  He said there were some a few feet down the trail.  We could see the fin action from where we were standing.  I almost ran to the spot.  We were very lucky to see them.  There is a boardwalk and when the river flooded the boardwalk became a few inches under water.  Apparently the sturgeon flopped over the top and landed in shallow water trapping them between the boardwalk and the shore.  As I was trying to take some pictures, the DNR warden came walking up.  He explained that the sturgeon were trapped, and they would have to find a way to release them.  He said the male sturgeon have to be 14 years old and the females 20 years old before they spawn.  He also said that the water has to be 54 degrees.  Since the water temperature has gone down because of the cooler weather we have had in the last couple day, the fish wouldn't be in our town for several days.  At that time they will bring in a crew to tag the fish in Princeton.  Maybe we will see them again.  Thank you Mr. Game Warden for being so nice.

Sturgeon don't have teeth, they sense food with their feelers (barbels).

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