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Diving With Sturgeon

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
It can take a long time to get an up-to-date response or contact with relevant users.
Bill

Bill

Baron of Breathold
Oct 17, 2001
1,805
332
188
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Wrangled an opportunity to dive with Sturgeon here in Michigan. Conditions were very challenging - with a strong current that would whip your ass downstream if you so much as looked sideways. Managed a few photos and spent around 10,000 calories..

http://michiganfreediving.zenfolio.com/p7853399
Thanks for the post. I've heard that they can get huge. How big were these? Hard to tell without a reference.
 
HydroApprentice

HydroApprentice

Well-Known Member
Mar 17, 2014
171
52
68
Great pictures! It must have been an amazing experience :)
 
Fondueset

Fondueset

Carp Whisperer
Jul 27, 2004
4,604
734
203
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Thanks for the post. I've heard that they can get huge. How big were these? Hard to tell without a reference.

Hi Bill, Between 4 and 7 feet, mostly. May have been one or two larger.
 
foxfish

foxfish

Silver Smoker
Dec 31, 2005
13,023
3,128
478
62
Wow, a special occasion indeed!
 
Fondueset

Fondueset

Carp Whisperer
Jul 27, 2004
4,604
734
203
17
 DSC1175
 DSC1326


A really picturesque and remote area. ( Those dark things in the corners are the shield around my lens - they vanish underwater due to science :) )

The level of work involved was intense. For the first Session the water temp was 51f/10.5c and I was very warm in my 5 mil suit. The water in my 3 finger mitts felt like soup. The second session was six days later and the water was up to 61f/16c. Obviously, staying warm was not a problem. I planned to use my 3 mil suit if we did a third session.

The mono fin was a great help as long as I didn't lose my focus and get swept downstream.

I did a couple dives without the camera and things were much easier. During one dive I was able to find something to grab onto upstream of a pod of Sturgeon and they formed up in my lee - just inches away. These fish don't mind being petted, (and are not harmed because of their shark-like skin) but they were initially spooked by the mono fin. Seemed to take about 15minutes for them to get used to it - after that I was part of the tribe.

http://michiganfreediving.zenfolio.com/p7853399/slideshow

A lot of the shots are soft - the battle of getting good compositions and having them be in focus was a formidable one due to limited viz and everything moving rather quickly.





And some footage taken by my dive buddy, Jason, that gives an impression of the chaos..


 
Last edited:
Triton1715

Triton1715

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2013
161
34
68
Nice pics! Thanks for sharing! What river were you in?
 
Triton1715

Triton1715

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2013
161
34
68
Are you in my neck of the woods?! Or is this on the east side of the state?
 
Triton1715

Triton1715

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2013
161
34
68
Ha! I was over there just a few days ago on my way to Grand Marais in the U.P. I know where you're talking about now. My family used to have a cabin in Millersburg and I always remember the drive to Onaway. Have fun out there!
 
C

cdavis

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2003
4,067
803
218
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WOW!! So many of them and so big. Wonderful dive. I'm envious. Thanks for posting.

You can see why they have been nearly wiped out in a lot of places, a whole lot of meat, easy to catch and grow very slow.

Tampa Bay had a very big fishery for sturgeon, hundreds of thousands of pounds per year. Lasted about 3 years before they wiped'em out.
 
Fondueset

Fondueset

Carp Whisperer
Jul 27, 2004
4,604
734
203
17
WOW!! So many of them and so big. Wonderful dive. I'm envious. Thanks for posting.

You can see why they have been nearly wiped out in a lot of places, a whole lot of meat, easy to catch and grow very slow.

Tampa Bay had a very big fishery for sturgeon, hundreds of thousands of pounds per year. Lasted about 3 years before they wiped'em out.

They're on all the fish advisories as 'DO NOT EAT' - but I know some people still do. There is a spearing season which I am sure supports the efforts to keep them around. Here are a couple shots of the little guys - the darker ones are 1 year old - the lighter ones 2. Most of these probably won't be released - they had a room full of Larvae they'll dump in when they are about 4 months old.

 DSC1344
 DSC1331
 DSC1264
 
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