Aug 14, 2010

The Black Cat and a Record Not Meant to Be

Today's black cat was a Mackinaw River smallie that took a mad tom fly in green and red.

I've grown to despise first cast fish.  Usually a first cast fish spells doom for my outing, but tonight the Mack had something "different" planned.  I would not quite call it good luck, but a couple interesting things happened.

First, I caught a fish on a dry fly - a #14 Adams to be precise.  I've tried many times before and never managed a dry fly fish - but tonight that changed.  The longear sunfish seen below rose to the occasion.

Secondly, that fish would be an Illinois record....if I kept it.  Last summer, there was a story at PSO about a new record pumkinseed.  The article carved out a spot in the back of my mind because it mentioned an odd fact:  most of the Illinois sunfish species have no entry in the record book.  It isn't because the DNR does not accept applications; actually no one has ever bothered applying. 

Longear sunfish is one of the unlisted species...I held a record fish and put it back in the water.  To be honest, I would have kept it if I were better educated in fish identification.  Getting a record would be fun, even a small one no one seems to want.

Next time I'll stick it in my pocket and head for the nearest scale.


  1. You might have to go back after it?

  2. I too have noticed many fish not entered into the record books. It'd be easy to enter some of them.
    Go for it!

    Pretty Sunnie!

  3. First fish on a dry fly. That's a record by itself. I know, I just recently caught my first on a dry fly. Congratulations on the fly, state record, and being strong enough to release a state record without recording it. LOL.


  4. Looks like a good outing, definitely some beautiful fish.

    That would be freaking awesome to have a record fish. Good luck on catching another one soon.

  5. @Tami - yea maybe, probably just wait until I accidentally catch another.

    @Razzy Dizzy Dazzy - yeah, longear really are beautiful

    @Shoreman - it's not a major accomplishment for me, because I simply don't try often. Normally I throw flies that crater on impact.

    @Mark - the secret is out, and you are now my competition for the record.

  6. It's on like Donkey Kong.

    Wonder what other ones would be easy records? I'll have to do some research.

  7. What a cool little loophole into the record books. You should consider pursuing that, would be very interesting to watch the lists grow.

  8. I gotta say, compared to that big old two tone, those little longears are adorable and beautiful. I think I'd rather catch the little guy.

    And, LOL "stick it in your pocket" too funny ~

  9. I think I'll keep on doing what I do, if it happens again I'll be a better prepared.

    And because I don't carry a bucket or stringer, a pocket will have to do....or maybe the zip-lock bag I use for camera and phone.


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