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Spotted Gar (Lepisosteus oculatus)

The Spotted Gar or Lepisosteus oculatus is a vicious predatory fish. These fish are found from Lake Erie south to the Mississippi River basin and even in Florida and Texas. Spotted Gar are normally found in drainage type areas, and even brackish water. As a type of Gar they are one of the few surviving species that have ganoid scales. These scales are considered to be very strong and lay over the already present cosmine layer of scale. They are diamond shaped, shiny and very tough.
The Spotted Gar is a long slender fish that can grow to 3' (0.9 meters) and weigh in at 8lbs (3.6 kg). This species can be distinguished from other Gars by the dark spots on the top of their heads, pectoral fins and on the pelvic fins as well. This fish has a special swim bladder which enables them to gulp air and live in very poorly oxygenated waters. They can live to about 18 years old although they reach sexual maturity in only 3 to 4 years.

To see the Spotted Gar in action check out this video below...




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