JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Pallid sturgeon, part of a family of fish that originated during the Cretaceous period 70 million years ago, has remained essentially unchanged. However, the pallid sturgeon has been brought to the brink of extinction in the last century due to overharvest and loss of habitat. Discover nature and learn more about this fish at the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Runge Nature Center’s Aquatic Relatives of the Dinosaurs program from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 7.
Pallid sturgeon (Scaphirhynchus albus) was listed as endangered by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service in 1990. In 1992, Missouri’s Blind Pony Hatchery hatched the first ever hatchery reared pallid sturgeons. Since then, state and federal hatcheries have produced hatchery reared pallid sturgeon to stock rivers where pallid sturgeon once thrived. As a result, pallid sturgeon numbers are on the rise.
Like the American bald eagle, the pallid sturgeon is anticipated to be another species that will someday be removed from the endangered species list. Research and management continues to improve our understanding of this endangered fish.
Come hear about the pallid sturgeon and its incredible journey from a path of extinction to increasing abundance in Missouri's large rivers. The program is free and no registration is required.
Runge Nature Center is located on Hwy 179 in Jefferson City approximately .5 mile north of Hwy 50. Building hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday with extended hours until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. The building is closed on Sunday and Monday. The outdoor trails are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
For more information on this or other programs, call 573-526-5544 or visit www.mdc.mo.gov and search “Runge.”