Shovelnose sturgeon use their barbels to sense prey on the bottom of rivers. Once they sense their prey they suck it up  from the substrate using their mouths. This hunting technique is successful for shovelnose sturgeon because of their ability to hold their position in highly turbid water. This allows them to have easy access to their with very limited competition.

Figure 5. Caddisfly larvae (trichoptera) by Jeff Shearer June 30, 2010.


 The Shovelnose Sturgeon's main diet consists of tichoptera (Figure 1.), diptera, and ephemeroptera. Trichoptera are caddisfly larvae, ephemeroptera are mayfly larvae, and diptera  are true flies. Its diet can also include mollusks and crustaceans. (Bock et al, 2011)

During the spring and the fall the trichoptera larva is what makes up most of there diet. During these months they usually take advantage of the waters current and eat prey as they drift by. The summer months are split into two stages early and late. During the early stage shovelnose sturgeon prefer chiromomids, but during the late stage it usually eats ephemeropterans. (Seibert et al, 2011)


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