Is it a muskie, pike or tiger? fishing spots from the host of TV’s Big Coast, Awesome fishing and hunting photos from Outdoor Canada readers, How the pandemic taught me the challenges and pleasures of solo hunting, Why your opinion about dealing with chronic wasting disease is important, 3 ways to be tick safe during your outdoor adventures, Ice-fishing Friday: How to rescue someone who’s fallen through the ice, Winter reads: 9 great new books for anglers and hunters, More great new adventure gear for the season (and beyond!). Natural Resource Plates. Known in fishing circles as Doctor Pyzer, he worked for 30 years as a senior manager with Ontario's Ministry of Natural Resources before devoting all his energies to fishing. Sign in. This potential revenue helps Koaw Nature to continue to provide this free educational and entertaining content for viewers and readers! Recipe & video: Scrumptious smoked-steelhead pizza—from scratch! “If you look at the relative size of the head on a hybrid (tiger muskie), it approaches one-third or 30-percent of its body length. November, 2016 - By Koaw (Edited 2020) The video hosted on YouTube will also show you how to identify the features of importance for distinguishing members of Esox. Muskie Vs Pike. But we wanted to release the fish as quickly as possible, so we only had the photos for reference (below). The words Muskie, Musky or Muskellunge are derived from the Cree Indian word Maashkinoozhe, which means ugly Pike. HOW TO TELL MUSKELLUNGE, NORTHERN PIKE & PICKEREL APART. -Northern Pike -Tiger Muskellunge Fight: Click on the images below to enlarge them. If we had noticed the peculiar pattern earlier, when we had the fish in hand, it would have been much easier to determine its ancestry. Both can reach enourmous lenghts, weight and have markings on their bodies … If you flip your catch over (carefully!) Based on this, I am concluding that it’s a beautiful example of the barred colour pattern of a muskie.”. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking on the "Unsubscribe" link at the bottom of every email. The Esox genus is a lovely one and definitely one of my favorites. Here’s how the experts identify these fish. Remember these fish are predatory and sometimes cannibalistic, so these fins can sometimes be damaged from an earlier altercation. Depending on the waters, different specimens of the same species may vary extensively in visual appearance. Modern arrows are more lethal than ever. BACK TO FISHING | BACK TO OUTDOORS ACTIVITIES | BACK TO HOME, Koaw LC - 11654 Plaza America Dr. #863, Reston, VA 20190. The video hosted on YouTube will also show you how to identify the features of importance for distinguishing members of Esox. Some areas may contain "Silver Pike", which is a mutant color variation of a Northern Pike. 1 decade ago. You can sign in to vote the answer. The fish had the noticeable markings of both a barred muskie (one of the many colour/pattern phases of E. masquinongy) and a tiger muskie—the relatively rare, sterile cross that is produced when a muskellunge mates with a northern pike. Every angler should understand what the LATERAL LINE is on a fish. poutypitbull. If there are six or more on either side, it’s a muskie. Iowa's natural resources plates include the state bird and flower, pheasant, eagle, buck and a Brook trout. Recipe & video: Tender goose with Morocco-inspired spices, Recipe & video: Tuscan walleye blends tastes of central Italy with a Canadian favourite, Blue Fish Radio: What Canada’s new Fisheries Act means for anglers, What hatcheries are teaching us about brook, brown and rainbow trout, 12 of the year’s best Canadian outdoor adventure photos. See for details. “Even with the 40-inch minimum, nearly all caught muskellunge are released. St. Croix River. So, when I estimated Liam’s fish, I came up with a relative head length of 26-percent. 1 decade ago. The cheek is the area just below the eye and towards the posterior (towards the tailfin). Here’s what that means for bowhunters, New government allies help Manitoba Wildlife Federation reach conservation goals, Why Canadian anglers and hunters owe Phil Morlock a debt of gratitude. The video below quickly explains what the LATERAL LINE of a fish is and what that means for your fishing game. Make your online reservation for state park cabins, camping sites, shelters and lodges. Being part of the same ”Esox” family and swimming in freshwater, they are every fisherman’s dream. I have seen muskies eat baby ducks, but I believe the alligator gar is meaner. Information / Records Requests Both pikes and muskies have pores on the underside of their lower jaws that allow them to detect vibrations in nearby water, but muskies always have more. Support conservation in Iowa by buying a natural resource plate for your vehicle. Esox is the only extant genus of the Family: Esocidae. A northern pike is primarily bluish green, with light, bean-shaped spots in horizontal rows across the body. Pikes and muskellunge are both predatory prize fish any angler would love to catch, but knowing the difference between the two makes a big difference in your fishing story… especially if you need to tell it to a conservation officer, because the rules for these species are different. Like the northern pike and other aggressive pikes, the body plan is typical of ambush predators with an elongated body, flat head, and dorsal, pelvic, and anal fins set far back on the body. Contact Information by County. They both have several things in common. Links on this website may connect to affiliate partners. Support conservation in Iowa by buying a natural resource plate for your vehicle. The Esox genus is a lovely one and definitely one of my favorites. Lv 6. So I did what I always do when the possibility of hybridization occurs: I measured the total length of the fish, and the length of its head. With a continuous season and no length requirement, you can keep your toothy prize for your living room wall, or throw it back after a few photographs as you like. Participant. Juveniles have oblique bars of light and dark extending up from a white belly. Kanlagratis has a You Tube series called 'Fly vs Jerk' that is a competition between flyfishers and standard tackle (jerk) guys fishing for pike. September 12, 2007 at 6:35 pm #1239710 …..and it looks like the Pike won the battle but not the war. Find where the ciscoes are spawning, Top B.C. Hybrids, or tiger muskies, on the other hand, have much bigger heads, reflective of what appears to be hybrid vigour in their bone growth. 0 0. John was the Senior Scientist in the OMNR’s Aquatic Research and Development Section before he retired to an adjunct professorship at Queen’s University. And keep up-to-date with Canada's fishing and hunting authority! My grandson Liam made a great cast to the edge of a small bed of cabbage, and started quickly cranking his lure back to the boat, when a gorgeous muskie streaked out from its weedy ambush spot and creamed his bait in a mini maelstrom. One of the most straightforward ways to tell these trophies apart is their coloration. Purchases made on these connected-sites within the link clicked may offer Koaw Nature a small share of revenue. Start typing to see results or hit ESC to close, Looking for monster pike and muskies? mark_johnson. Scales on Cheek and Opercle: The presence of scales on the cheek and opercle (gill cover area) is a good characteristic to view. Despite their differences, both of these trophy fish can be very difficult to catch – which is part of what makes them so desirable. They are a trophy fish anglers want to maintain,” says DNR fisheries biologist Jonathan Meerbeek. How do you think about the answers? They have some great footage and do show some very large pike. Biker. A tiger muskie, which is actually a hybrid between northern pike and muskellunge, counts as a muskie for length, bag and possession limits, and has dark vertical bars and dark irregular spots on … And they begged the question: Was it a muskie or a tiger? Now, isn’t that cool way to distinguish between the species?! Muskies have highly variable dark vertical bars on an olive to dark gray base, and juveniles may appear to have dark spots on a silvery base all over. The northern pike usually has 13-16, again counted on only a single lateral side. Submandibular Pores: Count the # of pores (they look like little holes) on the lower jaw. You will be sent an opt-in email to confirm that you would like to receive emails from us. Muskellunge closely resemble other esocids such as the northern pike and American pickerel in both appearance and behavior. Posts: 940. I quickly netted the fish and while Liam admired it, I dug out the camera, took a couple of quick photos and then we safely put the fish back into the lake. Tails on pikes and tiger muskies, however, split to two rounded portions. |(Indeed this clip is from my larger video on LURE SCIENCE found here: ► Thanks for watching. Mon - Fri, 8:00am - 4:30pm CST But that doesn’t mean you can’t find them. Pike vs Pickerel . Here are some meristic (countable traits) tricks for telling them apart. If you catch a northern pike, you’re in luck. Pike, pickerel, and muskellunges collectively make seven species under one genus, Esox, which is a genus of freshwater fish. Customer Service: 515-725-8200 | Iowa DNR Headquarters Wallace State Office Building | 502 East 9th Street, 4th Floor | Des Moines, IA 50319-0034, Scholastic Action Shooting Program (SASP), Declaratory Orders and Rulemaking Petitions, State Conservation and Outdoor Recreation Plan. Turn It On Its Head A northern pike usually has 5 pores on a single lateral side of the jaw (10 in total). They are beautiful creatures, fun sport fishes and good eats. Stripes and Spots Iowa DNR Customer Service The fish had the noticeable markings of both a barred muskie (one of the many colour/pattern phases of E. masquinongy) and a tiger muskie—the relatively rare, sterile cross that is produced when a muskellunge mates with a northern pike. Submit Online Inquiry Lastly, if you look closely (and carefully) a pike will have scales covering its entire cheek, whereas a muskie’s scales only cover the top half. He also teamed up with the late Dr. Ed Crossman, from the Department of Ichthyology and Herpetology at the Royal Ontario Museum, to undertake the Muskie Cleithrum Project, the scientific study that pioneered modern muskie management. Muskies, on the other hand, have to be at least 40 inches long to meet the minimum length requirement, so even if you catch a “fish of ten thousand casts” you may have to put it back in the water.