Fish Identification Guide Nebraska Game and Parks Commission

Shortnose Gar
Lepisosteus platostomus
Also known as: gar
Illustrations by Joe Tomelleri
Description: Primitive fish having a rounded tail fin; hard plate-like, non-overlapping scales; and a moderately short, broad, beak-like bony snout with sharp teeth. Our most common gar and is most tolerant of muddy water. Has the ability to utilize its swim bladder much like a lung which allows it to survive in waters with low oxygen levels. Has a more diverse diet than longnose gar - consisting of insects and crayfish in addition to fish. Seldom caught by anglers.
Family: Gar
Type: Non-Game Fish
Range: Large and medium-size rivers of eastern Nebraska and associated sandpits.


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