The northern pike (Esox lucius) is probably the coarse anglers’ most sought-after fish. It is predatory both in nature and appearance. The fish has a flat, broad, almost duck-like snout and an elongated, streamlined body with dorsal and anal fins placed well back. The colour of the fish varies with its habitat, those living in weeded waters being predominantly mottled green and yellow. Fish from brackish waters are more yellowish. Northern pike turn darker with age, old specimens becoming brown or even greyish. Northern pike are the subject of innumerable fishy stories, with many telling of ‘the one that got away’. Establishing the weight of the largest pike on record in the UK is almost as tricky as catching the actual fish might have been. According to the Pike Angler’s Club of Great Britain, the record goes to one caught on a rod and line in Llandegfedd Reservoir, Wales, in 1992. That fish weighed 46lb 13oz (21.3 kg). However, there is also a Scottish record dating back to 1945 which refers to a fish caught in Loch Lomond that weighed 47lb 11oz (21.6 kg).
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