Have you seen an unbelievable fishing photo or story floating around the Internet? Or maybe it was something you saw passed along in an e-mail chain, or a story of your very own. Well if you do, NAFC wants to hear about it. If you have a fishing story or photo that may be considered an oddity, you can now submit them to FishingClub.com. The NAFC staff will do a bit of digging to verify the story or photo's authenticity, and may even offer some analysis. To submit your fishing myth, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are a couple of Fishing Myths Debunked to get the ideas going:
Fishing Myth Debunked: The Basketball Catfish
FC Newsletter, October 2008
You saw the picture, you knew flatheads were famous for feeding on almost anything, and you shook your head in disbelief. But you never knew the true story behind the photo of the huge cat with a basketball stuck in its mouth, did you?
No, it’s not a doctored photo (according to most “e-mail experts”) and there’s no proof that a person stuck the ball in the catfish’s mouth to create the photo op. Sorry, conspiracy theorists.
The real story broke on May 30, 2004, when Wichita Eagle reporter Michael Pearce revealed the bizarre scene Bill Driver discovered on Sandalwood Lake, west of Wichita, Kan. After noticing an 8-inch ball bobbing in the one-acre development pond, Driver went to investigate and found that it was stuck in the mouth of a 50-pound flathead.
He tried unsuccessfully to yank the ball from the exhausted fish’s mouth, then had his wife bring him a knife to puncture the ball. Once the ball was out, the catfish swam off into deep water, far removed from the things of man.
Afterward, Driver mused, “I never considered using a kid’s basketball for bait. Maybe I should have.”
Fishing Myth Debunked: The Famous Monster Pike Photo
FC Newsletter, Sept. 10, 20008
You studied it. You debated it. You drooled over it. But you never quite believed it, did you? No pike picture in history blazed through the Internet faster or more often than this photo. Most e-mail chains claimed the fish came from Rainy Lake, Ontario, and was caught when it attacked a 36-inch pike that had already been hooked.
The monster fish, which weighed an amazing 42.9 pounds, was caught in 2004 on a lake in southern Holland by Dutch angler Ewout Blom.
He was trolling a perch-patterned Rapala Super Shad Rap when he noticed his rod bend slightly. It straightened, then bent completely. He set the hook and battled for five full minutes, including a few tense moments when the giant thrashed at the surface. The pike measured 50 inches (127 centimeters if you’re Dutch).
“The mystery is over,” said NAFC Executive Director Steve Pennaz. “You can tell by its coloring and the shape of its fins that it’s a European pike.”