Dogfish Where They’re Really Not Supposed to Be

Earlier I posted about spiny dogfish sticking around in parts of North Carolina when the conventional wisdom says they should be heading north (and I’m still looking for more dogfish stories from the Beaufort/Morhead City area).  Well, it seems now that spiny dogfish aren’t content with just being in estuaries, now they want to swim up the river itself.

Far from home.  From
According to multiple sources, a two-foot female spiny dogfish was found washed up on a boat ramp on the Ohio River in Illinois.  Though initially misidentified as a juvenile bull shark, this was quickly cleared up.  There are a few theories out there as to why this dogfish ended up in the Ohio River, including release from a home aquarium, being left as a prank (I know of an incidence of someone leaving a dead blue shark under the diving board in a public pool as a prank), fisheries discard, or being lost from a shipment headed for biology class dissections.  The fact that the spines have been removed suggests the latter, though it’s likely we’ll never know what caused this dogfish’s extraordinary migration.