Sturgeon headed back to Maumee River
Toledo, Ohio — If you don’t currently have any plans for this coming weekend, you might want to head up Toledo way to the Maumee River.
But don’t take your fishing gear – you won’t need it.
On Saturday, Oct. 6, the Toledo Zoo will release lake sturgeon into the Maumee River in a massive reintroduction project. After years of planning that led to the procurement of eggs last spring and a season of hands-on streamside and hatchery culture, the first release of lake sturgeon fingerlings will take place.
The Toledo Zoo provided the space, veterinary care, and staff to nurture about 600 eggs in a streamside rearing trailer that had river water pumped through it to induce these fish to “imprint” on the Maumee River.
Another approximately 2,400 fingerlings that will be released into the river were raised at the Genoa National Fish Hatchery in Wisconsin. The specialists at the hatchery have extensive experience rearing sturgeon.
The historic release of these 3,000 uniquely microchipped fish will take place from Toledo’s Walbridge Park boat ramp, 2761 Broadway St., where the rearing trailer is located.
It should be a blast, officials say, as they mark this historic event.
And you could have the opportunity to play a part in this historic event – those who attend and become a paid sponsor ($25, $50, $75, $100) will be allowed to release one of the microchipped fish.
Lake sturgeon are native to Lake Erie, but overfishing and treatment as a nuisance species virtually wiped them out in the early 20th Century.