Sunday, August 14, 2005

Northern Pike

Northern pike are primarily fish eaters preying on species such as golden shiners, yellow perch, bluegills, and suckers. Young pike feed on zooplankton and aquatic invertebrates, but soon switch to a fish diet. Large pike have been known to feed on ducklings, small waterfowl, and small muskrats.

The northern pike is a highly prized gamefish. It is a fantastic fish to catch just based on its sheer size, strength, and fighting ability. The meat of the northern pike is white, great in flavor, and has a flaky texture, however it is quite boney. Pike are captured using large spoons or minnow-type lures fished along the edges of weedbeds. Another popular method is using a large live golden shiner or sucker fished beneath a large bobber just after ice-out in shallow coves. The current fishing regulations for northern pike in Maryland include a year-round season, a two-fish daily creel limit, and a 30-inch minimum size. The Youghiogheny Reservoir's pike fishery is governed by Pennsylvania regulations, so please consult the Maryland Freshwater Sportfishing Guide for complete regulation details.

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