Sturgeon not surging, but population slowly improves
PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Atlantic sturgeon’s population remains depleted along the East Coast, but appears to be slowly recovering.
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission says a stock assessment indicates the population is still very low compared to its historical abundance. But the commission also says the population has made some strides since the implementation of a complete fishing moratorium in 1998.
The commission says the sturgeon still faces threats such as habitat loss, ship strikes, incidental fishing and climate change.
The fish live long lives and spend most of that time at sea before returning to streams to spawn. They range from Canada to the east coast of Florida in the eastern U.S. The commission says the fishing moratorium will remain in effect for the time being.