Shore Buddies Wisdom Wednesday
Photo by Michael Patrick O'Neil
Swimming with dinosaurs! Longnose Gar (and other species of this family) are ancient fish perfected suited to thrive in conditions that would easily kill most fish. These primitive fish are distinctive for their elongated, torpedo-shaped bodies and their overly long snouts which are nearly twice the length of their heads and filled with a row of sharp teeth. They have thick, overlapping scales like armor, and grow to over 6.5 feet long, making them formidable ambush predators in the slow moving rivers, bayous and reservoirs of Eastern United States. They can also gulp air when necessary, allowing them to survive in low oxygen and higher salinity water than most fish. Due to large teeth the longnose gar poses a threat of cuts of laceration, so caution should be taken during handling of this species. The eggs are poisonous to humans and should not be eaten.