The History of the Alligator Gar
It's been said that alligator gar are living fossils which means that they have not changed much since they were first discovered thousands of years ago.
This could be due to the fact that alligator gar have a typically long lifespan compared to other fish because of their nearly indestructible (by nature) characteristics.
For example, a gar's scales are like armor. They're diamond-shaped and made from a double layer of bone with the outer layer being super dense and so tough that larger predators such as big bull alligators have a hard time biting through it. The inner layer of a gar's scales is somewhat spongy and interwoven to a sheet of connective tissue that allows the fish to flex and swim.
The gar's scales aren't the only tough thing about them. Alligator gar also have the ability to air-breathe which means that they are able to breathe air when the water becomes foul.
The ability to air-breathe combined with the nearly indestructible body armor of the alligator explains why they've been around for so long. It also explains why you see monster-sized gar still being harvested by bowfishermen. It's easy for these fish to live and grow as long as they do when they hardly have any natural predators and they are able to adapt to nearly any water condition.