Fishing News

Rare Piebald Catfish Landed in Missouri

Angler Chad Hester caught and launched a funky-looking 36-pound mudcat from the Mississippi River in Missouri whereas soaking Asian carp as bait. Hester was night-fishing with a good friend on the Large Muddy when he landed the piebald catfish within the wee morning hours of October 12. The specimen completely matches the outline of “piebald” due to the mottled bluish-and-white markings on its pores and skin. The genetic situation is called leucism and might have an effect on animals and people. Hester photographed the fish and took a video of it swimming away on the discharge. He plans to have a reproduction mount made by a taxidermist and didn’t significantly contemplate maintaining the fish.

“He can unfold his genes within the wild and any individual else might need the chance to catch him,” Hester told Fox2 Now. “I freaked out. I used to be like, ‘holy cow!’”

Piebald catfish are undoubtedly unusual, however due to social media and public curiosity in these critters, we now have been seeing and listening to about an increasing number of of them. When Area & Stream reported on a piebald catfish that was just lately caught within the Tennessee River, many different anglers replied to our Facebook post with feedback about their very own related catches. One reader pulled a piebald cat from Watts Bar Lake in Tennessee. One other caught one from the James River in Virginia. All in all, anglers commented with images of catches from lakes and rivers in Illinois, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska.

Louisiana angler Robyn Bordelon caught a 10-pound piebald catfish in March 2020, additionally from the Mississippi River. She was jug fishing with minimize finger mullet to catch a multitude of catfish for the dinner desk when she pulled up a jug and located the 10-pound piebald. Like many different anglers who catch one, Bordelon launched the fish after taking images.

“I’ve been chasing blue cats in a kayak on the river for 9 years, however that one will likely be remembered above all others,” Bordelon told Louisiana Sportsman. “I’ve seen footage of blue catfish with this genetic anomaly earlier than and naturally, you bookmark that in your head, however I by no means thought I’d catch one. I rapidly bought it netted, took pics, revived it, and fortunately watched it swim away.”

Learn Subsequent: German Angler Catches Gorgeous “Mandarin Catfish”

The Lower Mississippi River Conservation Committee (LMRCC) collected greater than 33,600 blue, flathead, and channel catfish for analysis between 1997 and 2014. All advised, the group documented simply two piebald blue catfish in its 17 years of labor. Each have been caught in Mississippi, one close to Vicksburg and one close to Greenville. A 3rd was reported to the group in 2012 that was caught by fisheries biologists with the Mississippi Division of Wildlife, Fisheries & Parks. The LMRCC notes that “Explanations for the coloration of piebald blues will in all probability stay a thriller on account of their excessive rarity. Whether or not this rarity is because of low occurrences, or to excessive predation from bigger fish stimulated by their conspicuous look, is speculative.

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