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Luvevolution

Rec Canal

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I had a fantastic day at the Rec Canal today and fished just off the parking lot at Merritt Island. I went to fish for Carp, but there was nothing going on. decided to throw a 6 inch tube out for the heck of it and that's when the action started. the fun started with on the third cast, which is when a huge largie hit the tube. got him out of the water and measured him at 24 inches, which is my pb. the next guy to hit was a nice little Walleye, measured at 18 inches. the action did not stop from that point and the tally was 3 Walleye, 6 Bass, 1 Pike and 1 Muskie............the Pike and Muskie were snot rocket size.

what I'm really jazzed about is the last fish that was caught, kind of. I don't know what it was because I couldn't tell what it was. this is going to sound like a fishermans tail, but the fish was about as long as I am tall and the girth was unbelievable. I'm 5'10" by the way. it had my big game rod completely doubled over. I had it close enough to shore that it was sitting on bottom and it wasn't thrashing around at all. I could see that it was foul hooked, so I don't consider it a catch and since it didn't come out of the water, it's not a catch either. the fish was hooked behind the gill plate, through a scale and into its flesh. I tried to get my pliers at it, but at that point, it went nuts and shook the hook anyway. the really neat part, was that it left me one of its scales. this sucker is huge. it's between 1 and 1 1/2 inches square and thick like a finger nail. in fact, it's got the consistency of a fingernail too. it's kinda square all the way around, except for the rear facing edge, which is slightly rounded. so here's where I'm needing help identifying a fish that you haven't seen and I could not identify. it wasn't a Carp, that much is for certain. it had the body shape of the Pike family, but this sucker was enormous. I've caught a 48 incher before and this thing made that one look small. it was a very dark olive colour, much the same a smallmouth, but not the same markings as a Pike or a Musky. the was also no colour to the fins, but had a more pointed Caudal fin, like the Musky. I have the scale in front of me and I took pics with my cell phone. now I'm home, I'll take better pics with the camera and I'll upload them. the colours are slightly faded after 6 hours off the fish, but I'll upload the camera and the phone pics. hopefully, one of you more experienced guys might have an idea,.cause I'm stumped. I'm thinking a hybrid, but hybrids don't generally get that big, since they don't live as long and they are sterile. I'm open to suggestion.

Rich

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you got me puzzled here Rich I will take a look through my field guide of fishys but next time you go to the rec call me lol

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Sounds like a gar pike to me. Based on the description of the scale I'll say a very large gar pike. Did you see a long snout?

Sounds about right to me. They can grow in excess of 4' and put up a nasty tussle.

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honestly, I don't know if it was a Gar Pike. I can tell you this, I've seen Gar Pike up close at pet stores and bigger ones at Marineland and this thing was darker than that. everything was happening so fast because I just wasn't equipped for a fish this size. my net's nowhere near big enough, etc, etc, etc. that reason, plus the fact I also knew it was foul hooked and being a good sportsman, I wanted to get this over with fast. that being said, I believe it was more of a snout like a Pike/Muskie, than the long slender snout of a Gar. it looked a little more pointed than the snout of a Pike, but not long and slender like a Gar. make sense? LOL.

the idea of a Sturgeon is intriguing. the tail was more pointed, like that of a Sturgeon or a Muskie and not rounded like that of a Pike. although, I seem to remember Sturgeon being more shark like and this was defffinitely very Pike like. when I look at the scale up close, it's very green of differing shades and a metallic sheen to it, but in the water, it was dark, almost black with no markings of any kind.

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There are both longnose and shortnose gar. Colouration with gar can vary dramatically. Certainly fits the description of the scales.

Sturgeon have a leathery skin.

Other possibility would be a nasty old bowfin, but they don't have big scales

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Except for the length of the fish you described , and going by the size of the scale, I would have to believe it was a big carp . The scales of a pike or ski are much smaller than a carp.

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I had a fantastic day at the Rec Canal today and fished just off the parking lot at Merritt Island. I went to fish for Carp, but there was nothing going on. decided to throw a 6 inch tube out for the heck of it and that's when the action started. the fun started with on the third cast, which is when a huge largie hit the tube. got him out of the water and measured him at 24 inches, which is my pb. the next guy to hit was a nice little Walleye, measured at 18 inches. the action did not stop from that point and the tally was 3 Walleye, 6 Bass, 1 Pike and 1 Muskie............the Pike and Muskie were snot rocket size.

what I'm really jazzed about is the last fish that was caught, kind of. I don't know what it was because I couldn't tell what it was. this is going to sound like a fishermans tail, but the fish was about as long as I am tall and the girth was unbelievable. I'm 5'10" by the way. it had my big game rod completely doubled over. I had it close enough to shore that it was sitting on bottom and it wasn't thrashing around at all. I could see that it was foul hooked, so I don't consider it a catch and since it didn't come out of the water, it's not a catch either. the fish was hooked behind the gill plate, through a scale and into its flesh. I tried to get my pliers at it, but at that point, it went nuts and shook the hook anyway. the really neat part, was that it left me one of its scales. this sucker is huge. it's between 1 and 1 1/2 inches square and thick like a finger nail. in fact, it's got the consistency of a fingernail too. it's kinda square all the way around, except for the rear facing edge, which is slightly rounded. so here's where I'm needing help identifying a fish that you haven't seen and I could not identify. it wasn't a Carp, that much is for certain. it had the body shape of the Pike family, but this sucker was enormous. I've caught a 48 incher before and this thing made that one look small. it was a very dark olive colour, much the same a smallmouth, but not the same markings as a Pike or a Musky. the was also no colour to the fins, but had a more pointed Caudal fin, like the Musky. I have the scale in front of me and I took pics with my cell phone. now I'm home, I'll take better pics with the camera and I'll upload them. the colours are slightly faded after 6 hours off the fish, but I'll upload the camera and the phone pics. hopefully, one of you more experienced guys might have an idea,.cause I'm stumped. I'm thinking a hybrid, but hybrids don't generally get that big, since they don't live as long and they are sterile. I'm open to suggestion.

Rich

B) It's a great report, nevertheless, with or without pictures.......................

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