American hackleback, white sturgeon, and paddlefish are indigenous to the Missouri and Mississippi river systems. American sturgeon are smaller and faster growing than most of the other sturgeon species growing to about 3 ft. in length at maturity. The Paddlefish, a cartilaginous cousin to the sturgeon can grow as large as 10 ft. and weight up to 300 pounds. All three, American hackleback, white sturgeon, and paddlefish have been used by humans as a delicious source of meat for centuries and their roe combined with salt made into a gourmet food known as black caviar. Because they are wild their diet and availability of food varies and their roe ranges in color and complexity which plays a vital role in how their caviar tastes. Lately, their populations have been declining dramatically for reasons such over-fishing and barriers to fish movement like constructions of dams. Some states have either banned fishing entirely or have laws in place which limit fishing. This results in caviar scarcity and makes it extremely valuable and expensive. All of the American caviar sold at Caviar Malossol is ethically sourced and of the highest quality at very reasonable prices.