Low Tide for Hudson Sturgeon
July 02, 2007 - Albany Times Union
By Brian Nearing
Even though sturgeon fishing dates back to Native American times, little is known about the species' life in the Atlantic after spawning. During a recent tagging on the Hudson River, Ellen Pikitch, executive director of the Pew Institute for Ocean Science, lead scientist for Caviar Emptor, and Pew Fellow, was quoted in the Albany Times Union about the overfishing of sturgeon. "First, we overfished our own sturgeon. And we are driving the pressure on the sturgeon in the Caspian Sea," said Pikitch, who has pushed for limits on slaughtering sturgeon for their eggs (i.e. caviar).
A few of weeks ago, Pikitch and Daniel Erickson, the lead scientist for the research project and a Senior Research Associate with the Pew Institute, were in Albany, NY tagging sturgeon with satellite tracking devices. The tags are programmed to pop off in a few months and float to the ocean's surface. Collected data will be transmitted to an orbiting satellite and relayed to the researchers. It's the second year of a tagging program involving the Pew Institute, The Wildlife Conservation Society, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and the New York Department of Environmental Conservation. Last year, 10 sturgeon were fitted with satellite tags, said Erickson. Preliminary data suggest the fish went south toward Chesapeake Bay, where there is a large commercial fishing fleet.
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