Sturgeons are large, heavy fish that are found in both fresh and saltwater locations in the Atlantic. They can be caught by baitcasting drift fishing, fly fishing, jigging, still fishing, and trolling. Sturgeons are often sought after because they are the only fish in which genuine caviar can be found.


Region: Northeast, South
Habitat: Bay, Ocean, River

How to identify Sturgeon

Sturgeons can be 20+ feet long and weigh 200+ pounds. These fish can live 100 or more years. They are long, heavy fish with five rows of robust scutes. As these fish mature, the scutes smooth out, possibly being absorbed into their bodies. Their gill covers are small, bone-like plates. They have four mustache-like barbels hanging from their protruding, sucker-like mouths. They also have small, bone-like plates blanketing their heads. The large body and little eyes appear a bit mismatched. The top of its tail is much longer than the bottom.

Where to catch Sturgeon

Sturgeons can be found in both salt and freshwaters. Shortnose sturgeons live in the Atlantic just off the coast of the eastern seaboard from Florida up to New Brunswick. Lake sturgeons are present from the Gulf of Mexico up to Canada’s Hudson Bay. Green sturgeons prefer the northwest seaboard in the Pacific from California up to the Gulf of Alaska and China, Korea, Japan, and Russia. Atlantic sturgeons are found from the Gulf of Mexico to Florida and north to Canada. White sturgeons are found in the Pacific coastlines from California up to the Aleutian Islands. Pallid/shovelnose sturgeons are found in the river systems of Missouri and Mississippi rivers only.

Range: Northeast, South
Sturgeon Fishing Map

The following are habitats where you can catch Sturgeon:

How to catch Sturgeon

Some fishermen seek out sturgeons because genuine caviar can only be found in the body of the sturgeon. One method that anglers use for catching these fish is baitcasting. Other successful methods include drift fishing, fly fishing, jigging, still fishing, and trolling. These fish are rather large and heavy, so anglers should use heavier gear and stronger lines when going after them. They are also known to have coarse skin; therefore, it is advisable to bring a net and hand protection along when targeting sturgeon.

The following are effective fishing methods and techniques for catching Sturgeon:

Best Lures, Bait & Tackle to catch Sturgeon

Live baits work the best for catching sturgeon – especially nightcrawlers.

The following are fishing lures, bait and tackle that can be used to catch Sturgeon: