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Species: Scaphirhynchus albus, Pallid sturgeon

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snout depressed, long
snout to barbels > barbels to mouth
tail base long, depressed, completely covered with bony plates
bases of barbels in curved line

Scaphirhynchus albus (Forbes & Richardson, 1905)

Pallid sturgeon

Body heavy, elongate, nearly cylindrical; head ends in a hard, elongate, bluntly pointed snout; snout depressed, shovel-like; no spiracle behind eye; mouth underneath, protrusible, with 4 conspicuous barbells before it, those with fringes, in a curved row; gill rakers fan shaped; one dorsal fin, well back near tail base; pectorals low, pelvics at rear under abdomen; fins without spines; tail base long and flattened, completely covered with bony plates; tail fin slightly concave, upper lobe (with a fleshy extension of the tail base) a little longer than lower; body with five rows of bony plates, one row along midback, one along midside, another along lower side.

Color light to dark brown, black to bluey black.

Reaches 168 cm, at least 30.8 kg.

Lives in rivers, rarely enters salt water.

Depth range: 1-30 m.

The Mississippi and Missouri rivers.


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Salinity
  • Marine
  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
Inshore/Offshore
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom only
  • Bottom
Habitat
  • Sand & gravel
  • Mud
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Freshwater
  • Estuary
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
Diet
  • Insects
  • Bony fishes
Egg Type
  • Benthic
  • No pelagic larva
  • Data
Global Endemism
  • West Atlantic Endemic
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • GC non-endemic
  • Extends North of GC
  • Continent
  • Continent only
Residency
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
IUCN Red List
  • Endangered
  • Listed
CITES
  • Appendix II
  • Listed
Length Max
  • 168
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 30