Talk about a fish tale he can tell his grandchildren, and it won’t be a fib.
But, Coye Price will have to wait a long while before he wows family generations with the bragging rights he earned recently. Price is 9 years old and reeled in a whopper sturgeon on Old Hickory Lake.
According to Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency officials, the tween hooked the monster in the area around Spencer Creek in 25 feet of water.
The story goes that Price tried to outdo his two sisters on the fishing expedition. And he did for sure. He hooked a sturgeon that weighed 79.8 pounds that far outweighed sister Caitlin’s pee wee 39.8-pound striper and sister Farrah’s measly 58-pound blue catfish.
“An inhabitant of large rivers and lakes, the lake sturgeon is one of three native sturgeon species found in Tennessee,” said a TWRA official on a post. “While they were formerly found in the Cumberland, Mississippi and Tennessee rivers, lake sturgeon populations have dramatically declined and are listed as endangered in Tennessee. The reasons for the decline over the last century are a combination of over-fishing, habitat loss, and the damming of rivers. Being a bottom feeder, their diet consists mainly of snails, insect larvae, mollusks and crayfish.”
If not caught and remain healthy, the primitive species lake sturgeon is possibly one of the largest and longest-living fish in Tennessee. Officials said some can weigh up to 300 pounds and live a century and a half. More than 220,000 lake sturgeon were stocked into the upper portion of the Tennessee River and Cumberland River in the past decade to restore the population.