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Turk

Mystery Fish

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Turk

Tuesday the 13 th of May, I spent some time on the water with my old friend from Stillwater High, Chris Felsch. We had blue bird weather, fish on the line, and smelled like suntan lotion. We only tallied three keeper walleye but had constant action from all sorts of finned friends, it was a good day. The most interesting thing about the day other than the good conversation, was an incident with a fish that got away…

Now I have never written in these pages of “one that got away”, so you may want to add that fact to your believability ledger. No, she wasn’t a walleye, start record muskie, or even a 2-pound sunfish; it was a fish I have never seen before.

I have caught or unintentionally snagged darn near everything in the river from mooneyes, to quillbacks, gar, bowfin, both buffalo’s, all the interesting fish, but this one was new to me. Chris and I were wrapping up the day and did the usual “ one more spot”. I pulled up to a sand bar that is formed by a hillside wash out, and this area also receives good current flow. Just a nightcrawler on a slip weight rig tossed out ahead of the boat and allowed to slowly fall down river across this sand bar. We fished this way for maybe five minutes, and then I had a pick up.

I set the hook into solid weight, and instantly felt the rod pop twice indicating a headshake of a fish. A quick carp like burst peeled off five feet of line off my properly set drag, nothing to unusual. Then I saw it, this fish violently jumped straight up out of the water two feet and shook like a gallon of latex in a hardware store paint mixer.

This fish looked like a buffalo but had a much darker coloring than the silvery bluish gray scales of the buffalo, these scales where blueish brown and the under belly was a yellowish orange, this was a two tone fish, and the snout was more elongated and cylindrical than a carp or buffalo, it was not a smallmouth.

Then the impression really hit, this fish tore twenty feet down stream in a second, then jumped one and a half feet out of the water while flying length wise above the water five feet. Plowed through the water down stream another thirty feet, and another spectacular jump with the same height and vigor, then plowed again while the drag was screaming.

The line was leaving the reel, I told Chris to lift the anchor because “I’m about to get spooled!” Just as Chris darted toward the anchor rope - the fish was gone.
It threw the hook as the line and knots were intact.

I’ve had sturgeon fight like the devil and they and channel cats over 10 lbs. are the cream of the crop in terms of freshwater fighting fish, but this mystery fish peeled line as fast as the Virgin Island bone fish I caught, but sailed throw the air like a flying fish.

The one saving grace I have to this story is my credible witness Sergeant Felsch of the Stillwater Police Department, is about as dependable and honest as the day is long. He may tell a story about his starting Pony football days-but probably not, he’s pretty humble. We were there, saw it happen and were amazed.

So there you have it, my fish story, a memorable icing on a very good day.

Keep catchin' even if you don't know what it is!
Turk

Mystery Fish Guide Service
www.croixsippi.com


[This message has been edited by Turk (edited 05-27-2003).]

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hunt4food

Turk,
I think you had a fish on the end of your line that I like to refer to as "the river god." He is a fish that brings you good luck and follows fisherman to make sure they stay ethical and treat the river with respect. If you follow his rules, once in a great while if he really likes you, he will snap your bait up and give you a fight of a lifetime. He would never allow himself to be successfully landed, but since he did take your bait, you can be assured that he likes you and he will be sure to tell the other fish to bite well for you. If the myth is true, you will have very good success on the river this year. wink.gif

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vern

Hey Turk, sounds like you might have hooked a Bighead Carp! They're an Asian fish that escaped from a few fish ponds down south back in the early 90's. They've been moving up the Mississippi ever since & now there are good numbers of them in Illinois & Iowa. I've heard they get huge and can jump about 8 feet in the air. They've been known to jump into passing boats & have actually knocked a few people out! Anyway, that's my guess. Search for bigheads on the net & see what you think. Sounds very interesting. Vern

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crappie getter

Thats why we love this river. You just never know what your going to tangle with. I had a buddy of mine catch a 24" rainbow trout trolling for walleyes between the kinni and prescott about two weeks or so. Wait until those big asian carp hit the waters from the mississippi. Last I heard they where around the Ia Ill border.

crappie getter,

------------------
Chris's Croix Guide Service
http://fishingminnesota.com/stcroixguide/
(651) 458-1899
arndts@tcq.net
St. Croix River

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crappie getter

Vern,

You beat me to the punch by two minutes I guess I better type faster. Asian carp like he said.

crappie getter,

------------------
Chris's Croix Guide Service
http://fishingminnesota.com/stcroixguide/
(651) 458-1899
arndts@tcq.net
St. Croix River

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Ferny

Hey Guy's, Recently I saw a clip on the Ahmad Rashad Real TV show. It showed a guy in a boat powered by an outboard towing a guy standing up in a dugout type canoe. The guy in the canoe was netting these fish in mid jump and throwing them in the bottom of the canoe. Some he missed jumped clean over the boat. That sounds like these carp but I missed the setup and didn't hear what they were.

Ferny.

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Turk

That fish was amazing! I kind of suspect an exotic, It happened fast, but I usually ID a fish instantly but this one is still a mystery, unless they start getting landed? anyway time may tell...
Turk

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shale

Turk - did you tell the DNR about the prophecy you had on? Whatever it was - I'll bet it spent some time at the king plant.

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Jim W

Well,
THe grass carp theory in my mind is yet to be debated.

I have heard these fish have not enter the system at all to stories of them reaching the Great Lakes.

I would think that if Turk caught one of these, which I highly doubt, others would have as well, if not witnessed them leaping out of the water.

Plus, I have seen TV footage of the aforementioned and I didn't notice any orange belly???

Call me a skeptic. An exotic species illegally released into the river or a mutant of some sort is where I am at.

Turk, unfortunate the fish won that battle, I would have loved to have looked at it on your website!!!

If you would have said "JA" was in the boat with you, my conclusions would have been totally different!LOL

Great story! Makes a guy want to go fishing even more!

Jim

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alvinmack5

Here's a link to that bighead carp. From everything I read on the net it certainly appears to be invading lakes and now heading Northward. Take a look at these fish. They are definatly exotic and look like they have alot of horsepower to put on a good fight.

http://www.uoguelph.ca/zoology/rush/zoo402www/Fall2000/ichthynews.html

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EBass

What a weird fish. Is that what you had Turk?

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Guest

These bighead carps are excellent table fares and, according to what I've heard, they are furocious fighters. Hopefully, one will grab onto my hook and worm soon.

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STILLNOFISH

Did anyone else read the article about these carp in the Star Tribune yesterday. Sounds like they are capable of becoming a huge problem.

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Turk

I had a good guy send me some material and it showed and described the blue sucker...

From the photo I believe this is the closest fish in appearance vs. the bighead carp...

But I probably won't know until I land another one like it???

The blue sucker is a native fish making a comeback and are said to be tough fighters...


Keep catchin'
Turk

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EBass

Turk, can you post some pics of the Blue Sucker?

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