Species #53 — European Perch

Species: European Perch (Perca fluviatilis)
Location: Lake Pupuke, Auckland, New Zealand
Date: February 19, 2014

New Zealand is famous for its trout fishing. It’s also well-known for its freshwater eels. What it is not renowned for is perch.

So when I caught a perch in the small, urban lake at the heart of Auckland, I was surprised. I was even more surprised when the slightly-off coloration of the fish made me realize it was a European or Redfin Perch instead of the Yellow Perch I was used to back in the States.

It hit the same curlytail crappie jig I would have used at home for Yellow Perch, so they’re obviously similar in more than just appearance.

David and I each got our perch and then noticed bright flashes from little fish right under the concrete at the shoreline.

We were intrigued, but as night fell, we were hoping to catch one.

#SpeciesQuest #CaughtOvgard

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #54 — Common Rudd.

Species #5 — Yellow Perch

Yellow Perch are one of the most prevalent invasive species in Oregon, but they’re fun to catch and arguably the best-tasting freshwater fish.

Species: Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens)
Location: Hoover Ponds, OR
Date: July 31, 2004

The bluegill were lined up in the shallows, but slightly larger, more insidious fish skirted the edge of visibility, feinting in and out of the shadows in a cruel tease.

I had no idea what they were, but Dad thought they might be perch. He recommended using a crappie jig to try and entice them to bite. Sure enough, the tiny gold tube jig I found in the bottom of our old metal tackle box worked like a charm, and I promptly landed my first Yellow Perch.

My jig went down to the same spot, and I witnessed the telltale pointed gill flare for the first time. It resulted in a hookset and my second Yellow Perch.

#CaughtOvgard #SpeciesQuest

Read the next entry in #SpeciesQuest here: Species #6 — Largemouth Bass.