<< A farily good substitue for the flathead cat is the stone cat, the
largest madtom. It reaches a foot in length , and looks really similar to
a flathead. They are caught in the same envrinoments as small flatheads
too. There are alot of fish that can be substiuted for larger "game "
species that are of interest. mudminnows and grass pickeral do a good job
of replacing pike and musky, warmouth and green sunfish act much like bass,
percina darters are very much like walleye and sauger, and on and on. >>
Yeah, the first time I caught a stonecat I thought that it might've been a
flathead mainly due to the head shape and long slender body. I successfully
ID'd it as at least being a madtom through the fact that it has an andipose
fin that is low and continuous with the caudal fin whereas the flathead has a
larger more prominent andipose fin. I was also struck by how yellow he was,
that was how he initially caught my attention; I'd never seen any local fish
with that coloring before. One day I saw what I'm sure was a juvenile
flathead catfish in that same creek based on the whitish tips of its dorsal
and upper tail fins, so I can verify that they are found in the same places
as well.I tried to catch him, but he got away. I'm glad he did; I wouldn't
have been able to keep him anyway. I was just beginning to collect natives
then, hence was more impetuous. Plus I believed in the myth that they only
grow to the size of their tanks.
The first time I caught a central mudminnow when I was a little kid and
didn't know of the existence of mudminnows or how to ID pike; that's what i
thought it was: a pike. Actually they are supposed to be closely related.
They also remind me of killifishes (which themselves are reminiscent of
little pike, although they're not closely related). Does anyone know how
killifish keepers regard them (like members of the AKA who aren't necessarily
native fish enthusiasts but get into all kinds of killies)? With their
similar morphology they seem like something a killifish hobbyist would like.
I agree with you on the walleye/Percina comparison; I've always thought that
my blackside darter was very reminiscent of a walleye in general body shape
and more midwater swimming habits.
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