Each spring, Atlantic sturgeon, a species dating back more than 120 million years to the era of the dinosaurs, swim up the Hudson River to spawn. These ocean-dwelling behemoths, which measure six feet or more at maturity, vacuum up mollusks, crustaceans, plants and small fish from the river bottom with their snout-like mouths and lay their eggs on the rocky bottom of freshwater stretches above the salt wedge.
In days past, they surged up the river in the hundreds of thousands, but after demand surged for their caviar and meat in the late 1800s, their numbers plummeted. Overfishing . . .
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