The Muskellunge are known for a wide variety of trivial names including Ohio muskellunge, Great Lakes muskellunge, muskellunge banned, Ohio River pike, Río Allegheny , pica pica jack, without blemish and Wisconsin muskellunge muskellunge.
Muskellunge closely they resemble other Esocidos , such as pike and Sollos of America in both appearance and behavior. the body is typical ambush predators with an elongated body, flathead,Pelvic and anal fins are situated far behind in the body.
Muskellunge can reach lengths of 60-150 cm (2,0-4,9 m) and weight of more than 30kg (66libra).
The fish are silver, brown or dark green with vertical stripes on the flank, which they tend to be divided into points. In some cases, brands may be absent altogether, especially in fish water turbid . This is in contrast to northern pike with a dark body with patches of light. One sure way to differentiate the two species is to have sensory pores on the underside of the jaw. A Muskie will have seven or more per side, while the pike never have more than six. The lobes of the caudal fin in muskellunge tail hit a sharper point, while northern pike are generally more rounded. further, Another difference with pike, It is that losMuskies not have scales in the lower half of the operculum.
The muskis are in oligotrophic and mesotrophic lakes and large rivers in northern Michigan, northern Wisconsin and northern Minnesota across the Great Lakes region, in northern Canada, In most of the St Lawrence River and north across the top of the valley delMississippi , although the species also extends south to Chattanooga in Tennessee River Valley. Several North Georgia reservoirs have assortment of healthy populations of Muskie. They are also found in the Red River at the mouth of Hudson Bay . They prefer clear waters where they hide along the edges of vegetation, rocks or other structures to rest.
The Muskies take advantage of any prey passing within reach. Most of the diet consists of fish, also it includes crayfish, frogs, pathos, snakes, muskrat, mice, Other small mammals, And small birds. The mouth is large with dangerous teeth. Usually they catch their prey by the head, They hunt prey that are up to 30% total length. In the spring, They tend to prefer smaller prey because their metabolism is slower and in the winter they like larger prey.
The muskellunge is gregarious. They spawn in mid to late spring, somewhat later than pike, shallowest, vegetated areas. The males arrive first and try to establish dominance over territory. Spawning can last from five to ten days and occurs mainly at night. Zygotes adhere to plants and are then abandoned by adults. Those embryos that are not eaten by fish, insects or crabs hatch in two weeks. The larvae live in the egg until the mouth is fully developed, moment they begin to feed on copepods and zooplankton. Soon they start to catch fish.
The adults have few predators muskies, except birds of prey and fishermen, But the youth are consumed by other Muskies ,( northern pike, Bass and Sunfish). The reproduction rate is low and slow growth makes the population being highly vulnerable to overfishing. This has led some countries to establish artificial breeding programs in an attempt to keep population rates.
Muskie fishing is one of the most famous. They can reach impressive speeds, but they are not particularly maneuverable. Higher speed races are usually quite short, but they can be very intense. They are known for their strength and their tendency to jump out of the water in breathtaking stunts. A challenge for catching fish, Muskie has been called “the fish of ten thousand cylinders.” Fishermen tend to use smaller lures in the spring or in cold front and larger lures in the fall or summer heat. The average is attractive 20-30 cm (7,9-12 inch) long, but it lures 35-65 cm (14-26 inches) They are not uncommon in the arsenal Fisherman . Strongly among fishermen practice catch and release is recommended.
Muskellunge in some areas are considered invasive alien species. Due to the predatory nature and aggressive behavior of muskellunge, Fish present a major problem for native species in watercourses. In these situations sometimes they ask fishermen remove.
Despite its crossbreeding with other species of pike may complicate the classification of some zoologists usually they recognize three subspecies of muskellunge.
Great Lakes (stained) muskellunge (Masquinongy Esox masquinongy) It is the most common variety in the Great Lakes region and surrounding area. Spots on the body are oblique rows.
The Chautauqua muskellunge (E. M. ohioensis) It is known by the Ohio River system, Lago Chautauqua, Lago Ontario, And the St. Lawrence River.
Clear or muskellunge (E. M. clean?) It is more common in lakes in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Northwestern Ontario and southeastern Manitoba.
The tiger muskellunge (Masquinongy E. x Lucius o Lucio E. x masquinongy) It is a hybrid of the pike and musky North. Hybrids are sterile females although sometimes, unsuccessfully, participate in spawning movements. Some hybrids are produced artificially for sport fishers. Tiger muskies grow faster than pure sMuskies, but they do not reach the final size of your pure primes like Tiger Muskie do not live as. The body is often enough silver and largely or totally, without stains, but with different longitudinal bands.
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