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Huso dauricus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII ACIPENSERIFORMES ACIPENSERIDAE

Scientific Name: Huso dauricus
Species Authority: (Georgi, 1775)
Common Name(s):
English Kaluga

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered A2bd ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2009-10-24
Assessor(s): Ruban, G. & Qiwei, W.
Reviewer(s): Pourkazemi, M. & Smith, K.
Justification:
The species has undergone a sharp decline in both stock and recruitment. The dramatic stock decline began in the late 19th century and continues to the present day. From the late 19th century to 1992 the population has experienced a decline of more than 80%. During the last ten to fifteen years a very large decrease in the abundance of this species has occurred. The average age of fishes is subsequently decreasing as a result of catch of adults by poachers for caviar. This has resulted in females reproducing only once in their lifetime. This species has therefore been assessed as Critically Endangered.
History:
1996 Endangered
1994 Rare (Groombridge 1994)
1990 Rare (IUCN 1990)
1988 Rare (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1988)
1986 Rare (IUCN Conservation Monitoring Centre 1986)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The Kaluga Sturgeon inhabits the entire Amur River basin from the estuary to the river’s upper reaches. It occurs in tributaries - the Shilka, Onon, Argun, Nerch, Sungari, Nonni and Ussuri and Neijiang Rivers (Krykhtin and Svirskii 1997). It rarely occurs in Lake Khanka. Young specimens also appear in the coastal waters of the Sea of Okhotsk, near the northeastern part of the Tatar Strait, and in the Sea of Japan near the islands of Hokkaido and Honshu (Krykhtin and Svirskii 1997, Shmigirilov et al. 2007). There are two separate populations in the Amur River tributaries - Zeya River and Bureya River (Krykhtin and Svirskii 1997, Shmigirilov et al. 2007, Chen 2007).
Countries:
Native:
China; Russian Federation
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Currently, complete population data based on results of direct counts and fishery statistics do not exist for this species. A decline of catches has been observed since the end of the 19th century (Vaisman and Fomenko 2007). Towards the end of the 19th century, annual catch was approximately 500 tonnes. Before 1992 the annual catch was 92 tonnes. This indicates a greater than 80% decline in catches over 90 years (Vaisman and Fomenko 2007).

A hatchery is located in Luchegorsk at Khabarovsk district which contains a living collection of eight species of sturgeons (including the Kaluga Sturgeon) and hybrids. In 2007, this hatchery attempted the first re-stocking of juveniles of this this species into the Amur River.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Habitat: All types of benthic habitats in large rivers and lakes of the Amur River basin.

Biology: Semi-anadromous (anadromous fishes spend at least part of their life in salt water and return to rivers to breed). The Kaluga Sturgeon spawns in lower reaches of the Amur River in strong-current habitats in the main stream of the river on gravel or sandy-gravel bottom. Spawning peaks from the end of May to July. Adults spawn many times during their life cycle. Spawning periodicity is 4-5 years in females and 3-4 years in males. The generation length of the species is not less than 20 years (Krykhtin and Svirskii 1997, Berg 1948).
Systems: Freshwater; Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is removed from the wild for human consumption and research.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The causes of the population decline are still overfishing, both legal and poaching (Vaisman and Fomenko 2007). Recently, environmental pollution in the Amur River basin threatens the habitat and reproduction of this species (Shmigirilov et al. 2007, Chen 2007).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The majority of 'conservation' measures historically were directed to control local and national fisheries. Commercial sturgeon fishing was prohibited in the Soviet Union during the periods 1923-1930, 1958-1976 and from 1984 to the present (Vaisman and Fomenko 2007). The Kaluga Sturgeon was listed in Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1998.

Citation: Ruban, G. & Qiwei, W. 2010. Huso dauricus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 16 September 2014.
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