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Shortnose Sturgeon Spawning Confirmed for Second Year in Connecticut

In Spring 2021, CT DEEP began setting sampling gear in an area of the Connecticut River suspected as a spawning area for Shortnose Sturgeon, an endangered species. Sampling efforts were continued in Spring 2022. In both years, sampling was a success!

Learn more below and through this story map – “Sturgeon: Connecticut’s Living Dinosaurs”.

A total of 70 eggs were collected for analysis over a twelve-day period in Spring 2021 when CT DEEP’s sampling efforts collected eggs on three of four collection attempts. All mats were removed from the water following these egg collections to avoid impacting remaining spawning efforts. Egg mats were placed in the spawning area again this Spring and sampling efforts have successfully collected more than a dozen Shortnose Sturgeon eggs so far in 2022, in addition to larval sturgeon 1-2 days post-hatch.

Proof of recent successful spawning below the Holyoke Dam confirms the Agency’s long held belief that this area is an important sturgeon spawning ground. This scientific discovery will have direct bearing on how State and Federal Agencies manage this Endangered species. This research was jointly funded by National Marine Fisheries Service Section 6 Grant for Endangered Species and the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Special thanks to the Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game for granting the Scientific Collectors permit allowing access to the site.

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