Lake Sturgeon Fact Sheet

Common Name:

Lake Sturgeon / Rock Sturgeon

Scientific Name:

Acipenser fulvescens

Wild Status:

Least Concern


Lakes, rivers, streams, and creeks


Across North America, primarily the United States



Life Span:

Females heavily outlive males at 80-150 years, average male lifespan is 55 years


Can grow past 6-7 feet long, and weigh over 200 pounds

Cool Facts:

  • The Lake Sturgeon is one of about 25 different species of sturgeon.
  • This fish has prehensile lips. This means they are adapted well for grasping things, helping them catch food.
  • Sexually dimorphic by their lifespans. Males only live around 55 years but females can live almost 3 times as long!
  • Found across American rivers & lakes, from the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River.
  • Lake Winnebago in Wisconsin is considered the home of one of the largest self-sustaining populations of Lake Sturgeon in the world.
  • Their diet includes animals at the bottom of the lake, like small invertebrates, leeches, snails, and more.


The Lake Sturgeon are a staple fish found in various rivers & lakes across America. They are also known as the largest and oldest native species in the Great Lakes. These fish will migrate often, looking for food sources and suitable locations to reproduce, however they are primarily found in rivers across North America. The reproductive life of a lake sturgeon are a bit unique, as females do not begin spawning until at least 14. However, females can lay anywhere from 2 to 3 million eggs per season! These fish were once extremely populated until overfishing began to wipe them out. Lake Sturgeon were considered threatened in Michigan in 1994, and as conservation efforts began to keep this species alive, they are now thriving.

Taxonomic Breakdown:

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Actinopterygii Order: Acipenseriformes Family: Acipenseridae Genus: Acipenser Species: A. fulvescens

Conservation & Helping:

The Lake Sturgeon is of Least Concern on the endangered species list and thrives in its environment.

For Teachers and Educators


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