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Shovelnose sturgeon; Minnesota River (S.D. and Minn.); Fishes--Food


The shovelnose sturgeon, Scaphirhyncus platorhyncus, according to Eddy and Underhill (1974) has not been reported from the Minnesota River for a number of years. Recently, Wilcox et. al. (1978) reported a single adult taken in 1974, and two others in 1976. Our survey of the fishes in the Minnesota River showed a substantial number of shovelnose sturgeon, at least in certain locations. Twenty specimens were taken in 42 gill net days. Other data obtained included food habits and age-length relationships. Food habits were determined through volumetric analysis of stomach contents, and ages were obtained by sectioning the marginal pectoral fin ray. The food analysis showed the sturgeon's diet to consist mainly of larval stages of Ceratopogonidae, Chironomidae, Tricoptera, Plecoptera, Diptera, and Coleoptera. The ages of the sturgeon ranged from four to fifteen years, while the fork lengths were from 54 to 76 centimeters

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