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Jan 21,2008
Sea lions eat endangered river sturgeon
by UPI

PORTLAND, Ore. - The survival of sturgeon in the Columbia River Gorge along the Washington-Oregon state line is threatened by feasting Steller sea lions.

Fish and wildlife officials in the two Pacific Northwest states reportedly have tried to frighten away the almost extinct Steller sea lions, which weigh as much 2,400 pounds, with rubber bullets and underwater noise bombs, The News Tribune in Tacoma, Wash., reported Wednesday. The gorge is 40 miles east of Portland, Ore.

Officials said one of the main facets of the problem is that the sea lions have targeted egg-bearing sturgeon.

"These fish are essentially the anchor for the entire species on the West Coast of North America," sturgeon biologist Blaine Parker said.

Wildlife experts say stronger measures need to be taken against the sea lions for the sturgeon to survive.

"I'm not going to dispute the fact that Stellers need protection, also," Northwest Sportfishing Industry Association Executive Director Liz Hamilton said.

The predatory Steller sea lions are protected by the Federal Endangered Species Act.

© 2008 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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Oregon expands efforts to deter sea lions from preying on salmon, steelhead by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources posted on Mar 09,2007

Caged sea lions died of heatstroke by UPI posted on May 16,2008

Grant funds sea lion barriers on Rogue River by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources posted on Apr 06,2007

Sturgeon catch and release only in The Dalles Reservoir begins March 28 by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources posted on Mar 26,2007

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