Species #86 — White Bass

White Bass are closely related to Striped Bass, and much like Stripers, they’ll eat anything they can fit in their mouths.

Species: White Bass (Morone chrysops)
Location: American Fork Marina, Utah Lake, Provo, UT
Date: June 22, 2017

As I drove across the West on my way to Commissioned Officer Training (COT) in Montgomery, Alabama, I carefully planned my route to include stops at places I wanted to see. From Klamath Falls, my first long day of driving ended at Salt Lake City, and I stopped in at Utah Lake in nearby Provo for an evening of fishing.

Utah Lake is home to several species of Utah natives, including the endangered June Sucker, and though I hoped I might luck into one of these embattled fish, I realistically hoped to catch both a White Bass and a Channel Catfish — two invasive species that I’d never hooked into before given that the former doesn’t exist at all in Oregon, and the latter is very rare.

I found myself at the mouth of the American Fork where I hoped the flowing water would congregate fish looking for respite from the summer heat.

All I had for bait were worms, and I set up my first rod with a crappie rig that included two small baited hooks on dropper loops.

Before I could even tie a lure onto my second rod, the first dipped, and I was holding my first White Bass.

The spunky little dude was what I had hoped for, and it came so easily that I expected something bad to happen that night.

I landed several more White Bass that night, but the two other species I landed were what made the stop so worthwhile.

#SpeciesQuest #CaughtOvgard

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #87 — Channel Catfish.

Species #68 — White Perch

If ever there was a fish so frustrating for me to catch as the White Perch, I sure can’t remember it.

Species: White Perch (Morone americana)
Location: Potomac River, Maryland
Date: July 16, 2015

Why are they called White Perch? Well, White Bass is already taken. Though they’re in the Moronidae family with White, Yellow, and Striped Bass, they’re far from stupid. They should be called “Ass Pains” because they’re nothing more.

***

Fishing the Potomac River had long been a dream of mine, but finding access in and around Washington D.C. proved almost impossible.

When I did find access, it was on National Parks land with Lewis and Clark in the name, but I honestly don’t remember the specifics and a five minute Google Maps search came up empty, so here we are.

Anywho, I fished from a public pier that was rife with the type of people who usually find solace at Denny’s or Walmart or the DMV. People who kept Pumpkinseed three to four inches long like it was nothing.

Probably 20 people share the pier with me, but since the Potomac is so shallow and muddy in this area, I didn’t really have a choice. I saw a few Pumpkinseed caught, then a Blue Catfish (an invasive that has been destroying this fishery) and finally a White Perch. It wasn’t mine, but I held out hope.

I had tons of bites and even got a fat Pumpkinseed, but the White Perch just kept nibbling and not getting hooked.

Eventually, persistence won out, and I got my own little six-inch White Perch. I tossed it back and proceeded back to my car, hoping to try some of the nearby streams for anything else.

#SpeciesQuest #CaughtOvgard

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #69 — Brown Irish Lord.