Effects of commercial harvest on shovelnose sturgeon populations in the Upper Mississippi River

North American Journal of Fisheries Management
By: , and 

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Abstract

Shovelnose sturgeon Scaphirhynchus platorynchus have become an increasingly important commercial species in the upper Mississippi River (UMR) because of the collapse of foreign sturgeon (family Acipenseridae) populations and bans on imported caviar. In response to concerns about the sustainability of the commercial shovelnose sturgeon fishery in the UMR, we undertook this study to describe the demographics of the shovelnose sturgeon population and evaluate the influence of commercial harvest on shovelnose sturgeon populations in the UMR. A total of 1,682 shovelnose sturgeon were collected from eight study pools in 2006 and 2007 (Pools 4, 7, 9, 11, 13, 14, 16, and 18). Shovelnose sturgeon from upstream pools generally had greater lengths, weights, and ages than those from downstream pools. Additionally, mortality estimates were lower in upstream pools (Pools 4, 7, 9, and 11) than in downstream pools (Pools 13, 14, 16, and 18). Linear regression suggested that the slower growth of shovelnose sturgeon is a consequence of commercial harvest in the UMR. Modeling of potential management scenarios suggested that a 685-mm minimum length limit is necessary to prevent growth and recruitment overfishing of shovelnose sturgeon in the UMR.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Effects of commercial harvest on shovelnose sturgeon populations in the Upper Mississippi River
Series title North American Journal of Fisheries Management
DOI 10.1577/M08-115.1
Volume 29
Issue 1
Year Published 2009
Language English
Publisher American Fisheries Society
Publisher location Bethesda, MD
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description 17 p.
First page 84
Last page 100
Time Range Start 2006-01-01
Time Range End 2007-12-31
Country United States
Other Geospatial Upper Mississippi River
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N