Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Zeepiranhas

The bluefish, Pomatomus saltatrix, is notorious among fishermen for being a voracious feeder of pretty much anything that moves. Being the hapless fisherman that I am, this is why I absolutely love fishing for blues! Toss something shiny out there and you're likely to come up with something.

I can't figure out how to make captions, but here's a look at a snapper blue that I caught a few weeks ago while fishing in a cove out in Narragansett Bay with Eric. This particular fish is a young of the year who was probably spawned this spring somewhere near the coast of Florida. The West Atlantic population of blues migrates up and down the coast following warm water and more importantly, bait.

Learning the regional variation of fish nomenclature is one of my favorite parts of fishing. The title of my post refers to a particularly amusing Dutch nickname for bluefish. The snappers (another nickname and a ubiquitous fish term, here referring to a young bluefish) Eric and I were fishing for were feeding on peanut bunker (Brevoortia tyrannus) and silversides (Menidia menidia). Peanut bunker refers to young, roughly peanut sized Atlantic Menhaden. New York/New Jerseyans refer to these important baitfish as bunker and as you move north the preferred term becomes pogies.

So, if you ever find yourself doubting your fisherperson abilities, find yourself a shiny, metal lure and get familiar with the zeepiranha!


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