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The Siberian sturgeon is a large species that can grow up to two meters long and live to be over 60 years old. The species is anadromous (meaning they migrate up rivers from the sea to spawn) and males become sexually mature between 9 and 25 years while females mature between 16 and 20 years. The natural range of the Siberian sturgeon is the rivers of Siberia and the Lake Baikal. The natural population is in a steep decline and it is considered as endangered by IUCN. The decline is the result of blocking the natural migration routes by dams, pollution, and through poaching.
Did you know? Siberian sturgeon live up to 65 years and reach sexual maturity between 18 and 28 years. This makes them extremely vulnerable to overfishing. Siberian sturgeon are farmed for both, caviar and meat. Sturgeon farms are highly protective of their species and before we were able to obtain eggs from the farm, we had to prove our worthiness by volunteering during spawning events. The fourth time we volunteered we received a plastic bag with about 4000 eggs and were officially accepted.
Development of the skull and pectoral girdle in Siberian sturgeon, Acipenser baerii, and Russian sturgeon, Acipenser gueldenstaedtii (Acipenseriformes: Acipenseridae). Journal of Morphology. In print