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The Atlantic sturgeon was once central to the identity of the Hudson and Delaware rivers. Of course, things have changed, and conservationists in New York and elsewhere are now committed to saving this imperiled species. Sturgeons are primitive fish with an appearance unlike that of any other. They are easily identified by rows of bony plates or “scutes” on their bodies. They have a downward-facing, tube-like mouth lined with four barbels (or feelers), used to detect bottom-dwelling prey.