Primitive in appearance, the lake sturgeon has a torpedo-shaped body that is covered with five rows of bony plates: one on top and two rows along each side. The lake sturgeon has a sharp, cone-shaped snout with four smooth barbels on its underside. Its mouth is large and there are two smooth lobes on the lower lip. The anal (bottom rear) fin is not opposite the dorsal (back) fin, but rather it is closer to the caudal (tail) fin. The peduncle (part of the body between dorsal and caudal fins) is short. Lake Sturgeon are massive fish, and even more powerful than their mere size would indicate. Bottom-feeders, they feed only by taste so are not tempted by artificials. They roam the thalweg like animated vacuums. If you wish to tangle with one, be prepared with shark tackle. You'll need it.
Many Native American tribes relied on sturgeon fishing for food. They named the full moon of August "The Sturgeon Moon" after their tendency to gather at this time.