: Esox niger
OTHER NAMES: Pike,
river pike, grass pike, jack, jackfish, eastern pickerel, chain sides,
Found throughout Florida.
Normally found in vegetated lakes,
swamps and backwaters, and small to large rivers. They prefer water
temperatures from 75 to 80 degrees.
Chain pickerels are deep
olive-green on the back, shading to a creamy yellow on the belly. Olive
green blotches are present within distinct black chain-like or
interwoven markings on the sides. There is a distinct dark, vertical bar
below the eye. The cheek and gill covers are completely covered by
Sexual maturity is reached in first to
fourth year, and maximum life span probably eight to nine years. Females
grow faster than males. In Florida, chain pickerels can reach lengths of
up to 30 inches long.
: 8 pounds.
The white, flaky meat is good tasting,
but quite bony.
Although not so common as the black
bass, chain pickerels are often encountered by bass anglers, especially
while plug casting. They are good fighters, especially on light tackle.
TACKLE AND BAITS:
Productive lures include
spinner baits, weedless spoons, surface plugs, crank baits and jigs.
Minnows are a reliable year-round bait.
FISHING TECHNIQUES: Still
Fishing; Casting; Trolling.