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Hiwassee Mystery


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#1 Casper

Casper
  • NANFA Fellow
  • Chattanooga, TN alongside South Chickamauga Creek, just upstream of the mighty Tennessee River.

Posted 28 July 2016 - 06:02 PM

I was leading a group in the Hiwassee River on 20th and one of the snorkelers came upon this fish in shallow water.  It tolerated several of us getting very close but eventually dashed away.  At first i considered it an odd patterned Smallmouth Bass but it is much more aggressive looking, seemingly longer and the pattern very intense.

What ye think, those with knowledge?

My Snorkel Boss has thoughts but is himself unsure.  I dare say what we think just yet... and leave it to you.  I have never seen such.

 

In addition nearby under a log we found a pair of large fish circling and chasing and biting each other.  One was patterned as in this photo while the other was much plainer, almost bland.  Male / Female?  If i had not been concerned with the snorkeling group of 17 i would have spent a lot of time studying this spawning / nesting / pairing and taken lots of photos.

 

Attached File  10-Bass.JPG   86.97KB   3 downloads


Casper Cox
Chattanooga, near the TN Divide on BlueFishRidge overlooking South Chickamauga Creek.

#2 fundulus

fundulus
  • Global Moderator

Posted 28 July 2016 - 07:25 PM

I think I have a paranoid flash of what it is, too, especially if the head is flattened dorsally as seems to be the case in your photo.
Bruce Stallsmith, Huntsville, Alabama, US of A

#3 trygon

trygon
  • NANFA Member
  • Knoxville, Tennessee

Posted 28 July 2016 - 08:15 PM

Just wow.
Bryce Gibson
There are sharks in every ocean...except Billy Ocean.

#4 Isaac Szabo

Isaac Szabo
  • NANFA Member
  • Marble Falls, AR

Posted 28 July 2016 - 08:16 PM

Looks like a walleye to me, though I don't have enough experience with them to rule out sauger. 



#5 trygon

trygon
  • NANFA Member
  • Knoxville, Tennessee

Posted 28 July 2016 - 08:18 PM

Aww Isaac, you should've let it run for a while. I hope all is well with you.
Bryce Gibson
There are sharks in every ocean...except Billy Ocean.

#6 Isaac Szabo

Isaac Szabo
  • NANFA Member
  • Marble Falls, AR

Posted 28 July 2016 - 08:23 PM

Oh, sorry. I guess I didn't get the joke. 



#7 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Forum Staff
  • Ohio

Posted 28 July 2016 - 10:05 PM

That is the largest darter I have ever seen, Though I have seen many. Actually one of the first fish that got me into this, I shipped one of those monster darters up to a friend of Uland's. Jeremy, he is on here from time to time. This was before the forum, and just before Dustin Smith recruited a few of us as NANFA members. Thank you Dustin, and thank you Casper for inspiring the memory!  I did not get the joke either though. Guess I am rather dense.


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#8 mattknepley

mattknepley
  • NANFA Member
  • Smack-dab between the Savannah and the Saluda.

Posted 28 July 2016 - 10:44 PM

It's ok, DLV. I'm denser than you. I still don't get it...
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#9 Michael Wolfe

Michael Wolfe
  • Board of Directors
  • North Georgia, Oconee River Drainage

Posted 30 July 2016 - 03:39 PM

Sander... I didn't realize that was possible this far south, but Peterson confirms.


Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. - Benjamin Franklin

#10 UncleWillie

UncleWillie
  • NANFA Member

Posted 01 August 2016 - 07:49 AM

Great find, Casper.

 

Michael, I think walleye have native populations in the Hiwassee.  However, populations have been stocked to other rivers (and drainages) across north Georgia.  I'm pretty sure you can find self-sustaining, low-density populations (of stocked origin) in Lake Rabun, Burton, Seed, Tugaloo, and likely a few others.


Willie P
Roswell, GA





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