U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service / Facebook
The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office in Alpena, Michigan were surveying the Detroit River’s sturgeon fish population last week and unexpectedly caught a 100-year-old river monster.
“It was the biggest fish our team has ever seen,” Jason Fischer, one of the fish biologists that caught the sturgeon, told People. “This fish took all three of us to get it onto our boat.”
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service shared a photo of the 240-pound, 6-foot, 10-inch female lake sturgeon on Facebook noting that it likely hatched in the 1920s. Jason, along with Paige Wigren, and Jennifer Johnson said they were able to quickly get the sturgeon onto the boat, process her, and release her back into the water.
“She was tired out and didn’t fight us very much,” Paige told the Associated Press. “Imagine everything that fish has lived through and seen.”
The fish is officially one of the largest sturgeons ever recorded in the United States. Wildlife experts measured the fish’s age by its weight, height, length, girth and then marked it with a special tag so that if she’s ever caught again, they can identify her.
“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service partners with a number of other agencies and universities, including the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Geological Survey, Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and Michigan Sea Grant,” Jason added. “Together we monitor lake sturgeon populations in the St. Clair-Detroit River System and help populations recover through habitat restoration projects such as constructing rocky spawning reefs.”