White sturgeon

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The white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus, meaning "sturgeon beyond the mountains"), also known as the Pacific sturgeon, Oregon sturgeon, Columbia sturgeon, Sacramento sturgeon, and California white sturgeon, is a sturgeon (a fish of the family Acipenseridae) which lives along the west coast of North America from the Aleutian Islands to Central California.

It is the largest freshwater fish in North America and is the third largest species of sturgeon, after the Beluga and the Kaluga. The white sturgeon is known to reach a maximum size of 816 kg (1,798 lb) and 6.1 m (20.1 ft).

<gallery><!-- Image with unknown copyright status removed: Image:Bigfish.jpg|11-foot sturgeon caught just south of Portland, OR in January, 2008. --></gallery>

Physical appearance

The white sturgeon has a slender, long body, head and mouth. This fish has no scales; instead it has large bony scutes that serve as a form of armor. There are 11–14 dorsal scutes, all anterior to the dorsal fin, and 38–48 lateral scutes and 9–12 ventral scutes on each side. The dorsal color of a White Sturgeon is gray, pale olive, or gray-brown. The fins are a dusky, opaque gray. The underside is a clean white. It has four barbel, used for sensing food, near its huge toothless mouth.

Sturgeons are classified as a bony fish, but actually are more cartilaginous than bony,...
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