White Sturgeon

Acipenser transmontanus

Sturgeons are old fish, in fact in the past 200 million years they have changed little. These living fossils are remarkably different from most bony fish and have been likened to sharks. Instead of scales, these fish have tough body armour and a smooth outer body surface. Sturgeons live to remarkable ages and grow to even more remarkable sizes. However, they have not been studied in depth and most species are endangered or critically endangered. British Columbia is home to the species Acipenser transmontanus, or the white sturgeon whose Latin name means “beyond the mountains”.


The white sturgeon is most easily characterized by its scutes, or blades of body armour that run along the animals back. The white sturgeon, contrary to what its name suggests, is a pale grey and has a white belly. The largest reported white sturgeon weighed 816 kg (1800 lbs) and the oldest white sturgeon on record was estimated to be about 104 years old!…

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