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Yellow Perch

July 14, 2010

Location: Chateaugay Lake, Adirondack Park, NY
It’s officially summer! I declare it so less because we are past the summer solstice which marks the first day of summer on the calendar and more because I am back in the Adirondacks, my favorite of summer locales because of the plethora of fishing opportunities on the many lakes here. Last summer, I cast many a fly into Chateaugay Lake hoping to hook a bass or pike. Instead, I landed a half-dozen yellow perch (Perca flavescens).
At first I thought this fellow was a European perch because of its bright red fins. ’Wrong continent. Yellow perch look similar to their European cousins but with more yellow in their bodies and less red in their fins. They are also related to walleye and sauger, though neither of these species swim in the Adirondacks. You can also identify yellow perch by the vertical bars on their sides. They grow about four to 10 inches long and live up to a dozen years, unless they end up in a frying pan. Yellow perch are good eating, though you need more than one to make an entrée. We let this one go.

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