Shortnose Sturgeon


The‍ Shortnose Sturgeon (Acipenser‍ brevirostrum) ⁢is a fascinating species from ​the Acipenseridae family. Known for‍ its armored, elongated body, this fascinating sturgeon species⁢ lives primarily in ​the eastern coastal‍ rivers of North America.

Conservation Status

The Shortnose Sturgeon is currently classified as an endangered species‍ by⁢ the United States Federal Government. Extensive conservation efforts have been undertaken to halt the⁤ decline of their populations, such as habitat protection, stocking programs, and restrictive fishing regulations.


Average Range
Length 0.7-1 m (2.3-3.3 feet) 0.5-1.4m (1.6-4.6 feet)
Weight 4-6 kg (8.8-13.2 pounds) 1-14 kg (2.2-30.9 pounds)
Average Lifespan 12-20​ years


Shortnose Sturgeons are mostly found in the ‍eastern coastal​ rivers ‍of North America, from Canada’s Saint John River to Florida’s ⁢St. Johns River. They engage in‌ short-distance migrations for feeding and spawning‍ purposes. Their movements ⁣are impacted ⁢by water temperature, river flow,⁣ and availability of food resources.


They are usually found ⁢in freshwater rivers, but‍ can tolerate a wide range of salinities. The​ depth range of shortnose sturgeons varies with​ their life stages, generally staying​ near⁤ the bottom. Though they can survive in a wide range of⁣ temperatures, they prefer ⁤cooler⁤ temperatures.

When and⁣ Where⁢ to See

Shortnose Sturgeons are more active during the cooler months and⁢ more likely to head upstream. They are usually more ⁣active during ‍the night and​ at dawn or⁤ dusk.

Best Fishing Locations

Though strongly ⁤discouraged due to their endangered status, ‌if you are ‍interested in observing ‌Shortnose⁤ Sturgeons, some‌ of the rivers where they can be found include:

  1. Saint John River, Canada
  2. Hudson River, New York
  3. Delaware River, Pennsylvania/New Jersey/Delaware
  4. Connecticut River, Vermont
  5. Kennebec River, Maine
  6. Savannah ⁢River, Georgia/South Carolina

Identification Guide

Shortnose Sturgeons typically have an armor-plated body that​ is grayish-blue or olive-green in color. They can be recognized by their short conical snout and slightly ‍upturned mouth. They ⁤are smaller than ​most⁢ other sturgeons


Due to⁤ their endangered status, the harvesting of​ Shortnose⁤ Sturgeons for culinary‍ purposes is ⁤illegal. Hence, information related to taste profile, nutritional information, and recipes is not applicable.

Additional Information

Shortnose Sturgeons ⁤exhibit ⁤strong homing behavior‍ for spawning. ⁢They mainly consume insects, crustaceans, and tiny ​fish. Their ‌natural predators include larger fish, birds, ⁤and marine ​mammals. Human-induced threats consist of pollution, habitat loss, dams, and overfishing. Despite their current status, Shortnose Sturgeons are an important part of ⁤the ecosystem and play significant roles in local cultures and histories, particularly in ‍Native American traditions.

References and Further Reading

For more information about the Shortnose ‍Sturgeon, some recommended readings include:

  • Bemis, W.E., et al. (1997). Sturgeon biodiversity and conservation.
  • Kynard, B. (1997). Life history, latitudinal patterns, and ‍status of the ‌shortnose sturgeon, Acipenser brevirostrum.