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KIDS PAGE Sturgie The baby lake sturgeon Baby Sturgie was born in the St. Louis River. Like his brothers and sisters he hatched about 10 days after his moms eggs were laid upriver. Sturgeons swim upriver to lay eggs or spawn. His mom Stella Sturgeon is a 50-year old lake sturgeon and his dad Stanley is 35-years old. Female lake sturgeon can live to be over 100 years old but females dont lay eggs until they are around 20-25 years old. Depending on the water temperatures it takes about two weeks for sturgeon eggs to hatch. Baby Sturgie emerged from one of 400000 eggs. Stella laid her eggs in a rocky bed not far from where she was hatched 50 years ago. Sturgie was just a tiny larval sturgeon swimming in the river in a swarm of babies when both Stella and Stan returned to Lake Superior. The sturgeons return upriver to spawn near their birth place is called their migration. However when people put dams in rivers many sturgeons are prevented from getting to their spawning beds. Their migration is stopped and this has harmed the lake sturgeons ability to reproduce. Some of these dams have been removed now. Sturgies ancestors were nearly fished to extinction none re- main. First commercial fishermen found the big sturgeon they can grow to 8 feet troublesome in their fishing nets so they killed them and threw them away. Later they became valued for their eggs called caviar a very expensive fancy food. In order to get the eggs the fish had to be killed. For their eggs they were over-harvested for years. Soon few lake sturgeon remained. Native tribes also valued lake sturgeon way before the arrival of European people. They used all the parts of the fish either for food or utensils. Sturgeon known as nam nah-may to the Ojibwe is also a clan symbol. People in the fish clan are known as teachers and healers in the community. Little Sturgies family has always been in the St. Louis Riv- er. But further upriver few sturgeons remain because of the dams. People are trying to re-establish this ancient native fish by stocking sturgeons from other rivers. That is called restoration. By Sue Erickson Staff Writer Nam belong to a prehistoric family of fish that were in the water when dinosaurs roamed the earth. Color the picture of Sturgies ancestors. G.R.fitch 2007 Help Sturgie swim his way through the maze. Sturgeon Activity Book 2009ZenMedia Little Sturgie remained near his spawning site for nearly a year before he began his trip to Gichigami Lake Superior. Luckily he never fell prey to larger predatory fish who would eat him in an in- stant. He carefully swam along the rivers bottom feeling for food with his sensitive four barbels long whiskers that hang off his nose. Sturgies mouth can also extend out like a little funnel to suck up food like insect eggs as he swims along the bottom. Sturgies body does not have bones or scales. His skeleton is made up of 5 rows of bone-like plates called scutes that cover his back and sides. Sturgie has no teeth. Little Sturgie is lucky because his home river the St. Louis is one river where lake sturgeon restoration and protection are taking place. Little Sturgie can be Big Sturg if we all help. A native youth is awed by a young lake sturgeon that was fitted with a telemetry transmitter as part of lake sturgeon restoration research in the St. Louis River. The telemetry transmitter is used for tracking move- ment and habitat usage over time. photo by Brian Borkholder PAGE 17 MAZINAIGANFALL 2015