Pallid sturgeon spawning in Missouri River

June 29, 2007

The rare pallid sturgeon has started spawning in the Missouri River between South Dakota and Nebraska, scientists said.

There had been concerns that dams in the Dakotas and Montana had altered the river, keeping the fish from reproducing, The Sioux Falls (S.D.) Argus-Leader said Thursday.

Using radio tags, scientists followed two female sturgeon as they traveled upstream this spring between Vermillion, S.D., and Blair, Neb. When the sturgeon were recaptured in May, both had released their eggs in an apparent attempt to spawn.

"It is encouraging to know that they are spawning, but what it ultimately means to species recovery, we don't know," said Darin Simpkins, a fish biologist for the U.S. Geological Survey in Columbia, Mo.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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