Closely related to the Northern Pike, it reaches a length of 180cm, sporting a silvery body with small black spots. Like other pike, this species is prized for sport fishing, but is not generally found outside its native range. Amur Pike are only native to the Amur watershed and to Sakhalin Island. This species was introduced to Glendale Lake, Cambria County, Pennsylvania. The natural habitat of the Amur pike, which occasionally reach
35 pounds in weight and 40 inches in length, is the Amur River which forms the border between China and the Soviet Union.
A combination of understanding the fish and the techniques used to catch them will help you to hook more fish to the end of your line. Better knowing and understanding of the fish that you are trying to catch will make you a more successful angler, whether you are fishing for trout on a river or surfing on the beach or trolling on the open water.
The Amur pike, also known as the blackspotted pike, Esox reichertii, is a pike native to the Amur River system in east Asia, as well as freshwater habitat on the island of Sakhalin. This is the only species of the pike family that does not occur in North America. It occurs in the system of Amur River, Lake Baikal in Russia, Heilung Jiang in China.
The body is elongated, covered with scales. Scales cover the cheeks, upper part of the operculum and the whole upper part of the head. Amur pike have finer scales in the lateral line scales 130-165, including 48-64 perforation. Mouth large, snout elongated, flattened from top to bottom, the lower jaw slightly protruding forward. In adult specimens the back is greenish-gray, the same color of the dorsal fin and upper lobe of caudal fin. The body of the bright black or brown spots, such as spots are available and on fins. The young Amur pike, dwell among coastal thickets, black spots on the body are absent or expressed very weakly. They have on the body sides a number of dark, oblique bands, making it barely visible among the vegetation.
The Amur Pike differs from the Northern Pike by finer scales, and the fact that the head is more fully covered with scales. The Amur Pike does not reach the same size as the Northern Pike but can still reach a size that makes it an attractive target for anglers. The largest on record measured 115 cm and 20 kg (45 inches and 44 lbs). The main distinguishing feature is the skin pattern. Amur Pike are covered in dark spots; hence their other name - Black-spotted Pike.
Amur pike reminds a hucho by its coloring. It has a bright black and brown stain on its sides, head, anal, tail and back fins. Its size is less, than ordinary pike size. Its maximum weight makes 16 kg. They grow rapidly, growing to 80 cm or more. In 3-6 years they are already mature at a length of 30-40 cm in average life expectancy 20 years.
Coloring young pike, up to 30-35 cm, living in the coastal zone similar to Northern Pike, but in adult coloring is different. On the sides of the body and head with bright black and brown spots, such as spots are available on the anal, caudal and dorsal fins. By its coloring Amur pike a bit like trout.
The Amur Pike is very similar to the Northern Pike in its habitat and lifestyle. Young lives in the coastal zaroslevoy of rivers and lakes, and mature fish - in an open area of lakes and rivers. It is a predator, preferring to lie in ambush in vegetation and prey upon smaller fish in the water, and frogs, rodents and small birds on the surf. The pike feeds with the fine fish. The spring and summer pike fatten in the subordinate system of the Amur, mainly crucian carp, and Amur chebak as well as other species. Autumn basic food items vary depending on the kind of fish at the moment comes from the paranasal system into the channel of the Amur. This can be Hemiculter, crucian carp, smallmouth smelt, chebak. Pike continues to eat in the winter the same fish, only this time completely from the diet disappears carp, but there are various minnows.
Pike feed year round, but particularly strongly in the spring. They eat more often than most mass-produced fish and frogs. It happens that pike lug away from the surface to a depth of mice, rats and even squirrels, and swam across a river. Large specimens may attack the floating ducklings and other waterfowl and small animals trapped on the water surface, is also the potential victims of pikes.
There are times when the flood waters early isolated from the river, after the recession of hollow water no fry of other fish, except schuchih, and then begins cannibalism - feeding their own kind. Large specimens destroy small, and not only small: the maximum length of the victim can reach 75% of the length of the pike. Little cannibal length of 3-4 cm fall victim to cannibal larger sizes, length of 10 cm or more. That is why small groups of pike isolated reservoirs consist of one-dimensional individuals. Here the world is based on individuals pike devouring its own offspring, and only the huge fertility of a pike saves the tribe from complete extinction in these waters.
Amur pike mostly stay alone, taking in a pond suitable place (it is rarely could be two pike of equal size in the same place). Inhabits areas with moderate and weak currents, sometimes - next to the rapids - to a small creek in the Cape, or lying in the water, trees, bushes, stone.
In lakes, reservoirs and large ponds lives in places where the usual small fish. Large pike prefers deep, wooden areas, whirlpools, the area around the foundations of bridges and underwater rocky ridges below the sills, under the steep clay ledges, middle and petty willingly keeps reeds around the edge, or algae.
Habitat may vary depending on the movement of small fish, wind directions, surf the waves, water temperature and weather conditions. For example, in the spring and early summer pike stays on the small, sun-warmed plots, in autumn - on the deep. From the surf beach, she goes to leeward, or hidden in the depths. Amur pike prey escapes durable prosecution. Fish got enough energy mainly on a sadden attack. Pike are typical ambush predators; they lie in wait for prey, holding perfectly still for long periods and then exhibit remarkable acceleration as they strike. The fish has a distinctive habit of catching its prey sideways in the mouth, killing it with its sharp teeth, and then turning the prey headfirst to swallow it.
Amur pike becomes sexually mature at the age of 3-4 years at a length of about 40 cm, spawning from March to July. Pike spawn in early spring for spills on the most shallow. At this time may be lucky enough to see them from shore. When some of them crawl through a very small place, their backs sticking out of the water. They hold teams in each - 2-4 male-female milkman about one female, while large females can have up to 8 males. The group not stayed long at the same place, they are constantly in motion, with each group of female swims ahead, while males - behind her half the length of her body. Male or pressed against the sides of the female, or fly over its back. They noisy splashing. This whole pre-spawning game is finished spawning and fertilization of eggs with milk. After the spawning, all pikes, female and all males, like crazy, throw in different directions. Right after spawning pike are leaving shallow waters, returning to deeper waters and hunting for everything that moves, that can be eaten.
The spawning time of Amur pike changes, according to the time of tide, when the ground vegetation appears under the water. Flood regime of the Amur is original, there are three peak flood - spring, summer, autumn. Although the time of occurrence and duration of spring flooding associated with the melting of snow and ice movement is more constant over the years it varies in thickness and sometimes directly adjoins the summer. Summer flooding associated with rainfall and snowmelt in the upper reaches of the mountains. The higher the water temperature at spawning, the greater the loss of eggs.
One female, depending on their size, can produce from 17.000 to 215.000 eggs at a temperature of 3-6 C° at a depth of 50 to 100 cm. Each femail produce aproximately 18 eggs per 1 gramm of body weight. Eggs are large, a diameter of about 2.5-3 mm, as the beads from light yellow amber; Eggs are very adhesive and stick to everything that contact, mainly to water plants. When water temperature 12-14C° eggs hatch in about 10 days. Hatched larvae length of about 8 mm have a large yolk sac with a well developed circulatory system that provides them the opportunity to grow in adverse conditions and with the oxygen deficiency of food. The young of growing very rapidly, reaching in early June of length 5 cm, in July - 11-14 cm, at the age of 1 year - 20-24 cm, 2 years - 32-36 cm, and 3 years old - 41-45 cm. After reaching a length of 5 cm pike's main food are other fish species.
Pike - one of the main commercial fishes of the Amur basin. Amur Pike make for an exotic alternative to Northern Pike for the serious pike devotee looking for a mission abroad. There is no need for any special gear, nor any restriction upon the methods to be used. Live or dead baits are acceptable; so are lures. Fly fishing for pike is catching on and would be well worth a try, especially as the same rivers also hold Taimen, the largest of the Salmonids. Some of the best fishing for Amur Pike takes place along the Onon River in Mongolia, which is well protected by poor access.
Characterized lean meat (fat content of less than 2%), used fresh, frozen and salted forms. Leather Amur pike with appropriate dressing is suitable for the manufacture of shoes, coats and other products.
Pike can be taken with medium action spinning rod,
fly fishing or
pole fishing gear. Almost any type of hardware will produce a strike. A wire leader is a must when doing battle with these sharp-toothed monsters.