The lake sturgeon is a fish native to Lake Superior and Lake Michigan. The species’ population is declining rapidly; however, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has failed to respond to growing calls for action, prompting conservation groups to file suit.
The national Center for Biological Diversity and environmental groups in Illinois and Indiana are looking to have lake sturgeon listed as a protected endangered species since pollution, overfishing, and hydroelectric dams have caused sturgeon populations in some places to drop by 99% in just the last century.
One method to increase sturgeon rates of reproduction is to install fish ladders, which would aid the fish in getting to their spawning grounds. If lake sturgeon were added to the list of endangered species, entities would be required to do so.
Wisconsin does boast a fairly large lake sturgeon population. The state has been taking proactive steps to keep overfishing from occurring, along with restocking the species in various bodies of water around the state.
As for the lawsuit against the USFWS, if lawyers do not receive a response from the agency in 60 days, they can expect a federal lawsuit.
[Source: Wisconsin Public Radio]