Columbia River White Sturgeon

This amazing fish is truly a giant with the capacity of reaching close to 20′ in length and weighing as much as 1800 lbs. Sturgeon have been around for 170 million years and have changed little in appearance since then. White Sturgeon are know to live past 100 years old.

Columbia Sturgeon Fishermen divide the sturgeon into three classes: shakers, keepers, and oversize. Shakers are any fish under the legal size. Keepers are fish within the legal size requirement. Oversize, often called peelers, are any fish over the maximum size requirement. They are called peelers because of the way they “peel” line off of the reel. Many sturgeon fishermen target these exclusively. When sturgeon first encounter the bait, they “mouth” it, which is to say that they taste and feel it before inhaling it whole.

Sturgeon commercial fisheries use sturgeon for meat and eggs, the eggs being most sought after. Caviar is considered a delicacy in many parts of Europe and North America. In the Columbia River, size restrictions make it very unlikely any fishers ever legally retain egg-bearing fish. The fish caught legally by sport and commercial fishers are too small and not yet sexually mature enough to make harvesting for eggs worthwhile.

Columbia Coho - Here are just a few photos of happy Columbia River Guides.