Shovelnose Sturgeon


Shovelnose Sturgeon

The Shovelnose Sturgeon, scientifically known as Scaphirhynchus platorynchus, is a breed​ of fish⁢ that belongs to the Acipenseridae family.

Conservation Status

The⁤ Shovelnose Sturgeon is classified as a species of​ Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).⁢ Efforts to conserve the ⁣species mainly focus on habitat conservation and regulation of fishing practices.


Statistic Average Range
Length 20 inches 15 – 25 inches
Weight 2 pounds 1 – 5 pounds
Average Lifespan 20 years N/A

Other noted statistics include the reproductive cycle of the Shovelnose Sturgeon, which is between 2 to 3 years ​with female ‌spending longer time between ⁢spawns.


The Shovelnose sturgeon are endemic mainly in the Mississippi and Missouri River systems. Its migration pattern is not ‌thoroughly studied but ⁢they are known to move‌ upstream for spawning during spring and early summer.


The Shovelnose Sturgeon prefer ⁣sandy or rocky substrates in river‌ channels. They thrive in strong current areas of medium to large‍ rivers with depth range between 1 – 5 meters. The​ water temperature tolerance ranges from 10 – 25°C.

When and Where to See

The species is usually sighted near the river bottom in ⁣spring and early summer. The best⁤ time ​to observe them is during the⁣ day when they are most active.

Best Fishing Locations

  1. Mississippi River, United States
  2. Missouri River, United States
  3. Ohio ⁣River, United States
  4. Yellowstone ⁢River, United States
  5. Platte River, United States

To encounter the species, anglers are advised to look for slow-moving sections of large rivers, usually near the bottom.

How to⁢ Catch

Successful fishing for Shovelnose Sturgeon calls for a small hook, ⁣a heavy sinker, and bait ranging from nightcrawlers to small shad. Bottom fishing ⁢is the most effective​ method, and the‌ best fishing season is spring to early summer.

Identification Guide

Shovelnose Sturgeon are characterized by their elongated bodies, flattened snouts, and barbels in front ⁢of⁣ the mouth. They have​ a light, tan coloration with small, star-like markings.

Feeding Habits and Behavior

Shovelnose Sturgeon are bottom-feeders, using their long, whisker-like barbels to find their‌ prey which includes mollusks, insect larvae, and small fish. They are nocturnal feeders which become more active at night.

Predators and Threats

Natural predators of the Shovelnose Sturgeon include larger predatory fish and birds of prey. The biggest threat to the species is human activities such as overfishing and the alteration of their natural habitats.

Further Reading

For additional information about the Shovelnose Sturgeon, the following sources are recommended: