Look no further for a “real-life river monster” as Alpena Fish and Wildlife Conservation scientists have caught one in the form of this gargantuan, near-7-foot lake sturgeon.
Weighing in at 240 pounds, this female lake surgeon is “a once in a lifetime catch,” says Alpena Fish and Wildlife’s Detroit River native species crew. Posting their incredible catch to Facebook, the group says their “real-life river monster” measures an astounding 6’10” long. The girth of the sturgeon alone clocks in at 4 feet, too. This makes the lass larger than most full-grown men, as you can clearly see in their photo below.
“Caught in the Detroit River, this fish is one of the largest lake sturgeon ever recorded in the U.S.,” Alpena details. As for the sex, the crew says “based on its girth and size, it is assumed to be a female and that she has been roaming our waters over 100 years.”
100 years! “So, she likely hatched in the Detroit River around 1920 when Detroit became the 4th largest city in America,” their post adds. Absolutely remarkable.
The crew “quickly released” their monster sturgeon “back into the river after being processed,” they note. Feast your eyes on a “real-life river monster” and check out this undeniably special specimen for yourself below:
A once in a lifetime catch for our Detroit River native species crew last week! This real life river monster was tipping…Posted by Alpena Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office on Friday, April 30, 2021
100-Year-Old River Monster Sturgeon Could Live Another 50
One of the most remarkable fish species, sturgeons have survived nigh-unchanged since the time before the dinosaurs. Fossil records show these massive fish have always been kings and queens of their habitats, allowing them to live on for eons – right up to the present day.
As for lake sturgeon specifically, this freshwater species is found in North America. Capable of growing to true “river monster” proportions in large bodies of water, they can be found everywhere from the Hudson Bay down to the Mississippi delta.
Sturgeon are bottom-dwellers, meaning they prefer lake and slow-moving riverbeds. Males typically live for about 55 years on average. Females like the one above, however, can live to be as old as 150-years-old, the US Fish & Wildlife Service details.
Unfortunately, these “real-life river monsters” are listed as a threatened species. 19 of the 20 states they call home have decimated most of their natural habitat. Hopefully, legal protection for sturgeon will allow these remarkable beasts to thrive once more.