Classification / Names
Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa
Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Lepisosteiformes
(Gars) > Lepisosteidae
Etymology: Lepisosteus: Greek, lepis = scale + Greek, osteon = bone; bony sacled (Ref. 45335); osseus: From the word osseus, meaning bony (Ref. 10294).
Environment / Climate / Range
Freshwater; brackish; demersal; pH range: 7.0 - 25.0; dH range: 10 - 15; depth range 0 - ? m (Ref. 55225), usually 0 - ? m (Ref. 55225). Temperate; 12°C - 20°C (Ref. 2060); 47°N - 24°N, 97°W - 69°W (Ref. 55225)
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 66.9  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 200 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 40637); common length : 17.5 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 12193); max. published weight: 22.8 kg (Ref. 4699); max. reported age: 36 years (Ref. 12193)
soft rays: 8 - 10. Long narrow snout. Olivaceous brown above and white below. Dark spots on median fins and on body (Ref. 37032). Scales ganoid: thin bony scutes on leading edges of unpaired fins, and on both edges of caudal fin (Ref. 4639).
North and Central America: along the coasts and inland from Quebec to northern Mexico.
Adults occur in sluggish pools, backwaters and oxbows of medium to large rivers, and lakes (Ref. 10294). Usually found near vegetation. Occasionally found in brackish waters. Spawning occur in freshwater and possibly slightly brackish water (Ref. 4639). Migrate up rivers during the spawning season (Ref. 4639). Eggs and larvae are demersal and adhesive (Ref. 4639). Voracious predator, feeding on various fishes and crustaceans. The roe is poisonous.
Robins, C.R., R.M. Bailey, C.E. Bond, J.R. Brooker, E.A. Lachner, R.N. Lea and W.B. Scott, 1991. Common and scientific names of fishes from the United States and Canada. Am. Fish. Soc. Spec. Pub. (20):183 p.
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)
Fisheries: minor commercial; gamefish: yes; aquarium: public aquariums
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on empirical models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5781 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 4.2 ±0.73 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (tm=3-6; tmax=36; Fec=1,110).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Very high vulnerability (80 of 100) .