Saturday, June 7, 2014

2014 NANFA convention part 4 - Catawba drainage

Saturday was our last day of microfishing in North Carolina before heading back to Illinois (Minnesota for Greenwood) on Sunday.  We made a loop through the Catawba drainage, but had trouble finding public access to several of the sites I had planned on fishing.  I chose the sites based on sampling data, but I learned the lesson that sampling data does not necessarily indicate public access.  However, we were still able to find fish at the sites we did fish.  The first was the Johns River.

Carolina Fantail Darter (Etheostoma brevispinum) - new hook & line species #233


Sandbar Shiner (Notropis scepticus) - new hook & line species #234


Spottail Shiner (Notropis hudsonius) - new hook & line species #235




Our second site, Jacob Fork, was the highlight of the day.  The sampling data showed large numbers of margined madtoms, and sure enough we found plenty of them hiding under rocks.  However, the fish we really enjoyed finding were fieryblack shiners in full spawning colors.

Fieryblack Shiner (Cyprinella pyrrhomelas) - new hook & line species #236




Margined Madtom (Noturus insignis) - new hook & line species #237





Madtom habitat


Crayfish - with eggs!


At the end of the day we stopped at one more spot so Greenwood could try for redhorse and jumprock.  He caught a white sucker and a couple northern hogsuckers instead, but he left happy after finishing the day with a lifer flat or snail bullhead.  I put out baits as well and caught a couple redbreast sunfish.

Redbreast Sunfish (Lepomis auritus)


I really enjoyed my first NANFA convention.  Everyone was very welcoming and took a genuine interest in getting to know me.  I'm already looking forward to next year's convention in eastern Oklahoma!


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