Hungarian Scientists Accidentally Create Hybrid Fish

Sturgeon Paddlefish Hybrid
KÁLDY ET AL., GENES 2020, 11(7), 753; HTTPS://DOI.ORG/10.3390/GENES11070753 (CC BY)

They’re calling it a Sturddle Fish and its the result of accidental fertilization of Russian Sturgeon eggs with the sperm of an American Paddlefish in a Hungarian lab.

The biologists in the lab were shocked when the fertilized eggs hatched and a seemingly new, hybrid species emerged. The 2 species share a common ancestor who existed 184 million years ago before the 2 species split off into separate family trees.

The top and bottom images are typical Russian Sturgeon and American Paddlefish. The middle two are their offspring. Kaldy et al., Genes 2020

“I did a double-take when I saw it,” said Solomon David, an aquatic ecologist at Nicholls State University in Louisiana. “I just didn’t believe it. I thought, hybridization between sturgeon and paddlefish? There’s no way.”

According to the New York Times, “Dr. Mozsár and his colleagues plan to continue caring for the hybrids they created, they have no plans to make more. The researchers suspect that sturddlefish, like ligers, mules and so many other human-made hybrids, are sterile, so they have no value for caviar production.”

To read more about the lab creation, check out this article from the New York Times.

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