As many as 200 sturgeon were stranded in Sturgeon Lake on Sauvie Island Monday after water levels dropped and left the fish cut off from the main body of water and isolated in a shallow muddy pool, officials said.
A nearby resident first noticed the distinctive fins of the large fish, whose evolutionary characteristics date back more than 200 million years, in a pond that was separated from the rest of the lake by a vast mud flat, said Rick Swart, a spokesman for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Other reports claim that there are 500 to 600 fish trapped many of which are the larger breeding size fish. In an effort the save the fish the agency rented a pump and began putting water into the pond where the fish were trapped, both to raise the water level to give the animals a means to escape and also to raise the oxygen levels in the water.
“We’re hoping to buy the fish sometime,” Swart said. “Whether it’s from mother nature or us, I’m not sure, but they need some help.
With sturgeon listed as threatened in the region, many fear the loss of these fish could have severe consequences for the sturgeon populations in the area. Some activist are calling for the Corp. of Army Engineers to get involved as they are most likely to have the resources to deal with the situation. However, at this time the ODFW has gotten involved.