popperguy

Fish id needlefish / halfbeak

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Never seen these in my life western ct sound. Outgoing tide, tidal marsh.12-14” long. Swimming in schools of 5 or more. I thought pipefish but these are big. Any idea

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They hunt in packs of 4-5 when i see them.  They attack small bait and teasers with a passion.  Bass love to eat them.

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When I was a kid in the 70s I uses to see schools of hundreds of these in the outflow from the cooling water of a local powerplant. They would hit small spoons, but their mouths/beaks are so bony I never managed to hook one that way. On the other hand they were easy to snag with a weighted treble hook - I used to snag dozens of them, freeze them, and cut them up in to 1" chunks to feed to my Oscar - a type of tropical fish.

I've also run across them more recently in Pleasant bay on the Cape - they like outflows where they can lie in wait for small bait. 

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10 hours ago, Caveman8 said:

When I was a kid in the 70s I uses to see schools of hundreds of these in the outflow from the cooling water of a local powerplant. They would hit small spoons, but their mouths/beaks are so bony I never managed to hook one that way. On the other hand they were easy to snag with a weighted treble hook - I used to snag dozens of them, freeze them, and cut them up in to 1" chunks to feed to my Oscar - a type of tropical fish.

I've also run across them more recently in Pleasant bay on the Cape - they like outflows where they can lie in wait for small bait. 

I used to see a lot of them in roughly the same place at about the same time.

 

Used to hang out at the town dock in Cos Cob back then, and when we were all standing around BS-ing after dinner, there were always quite a few needlefish swimming around under the lights, grabbing grass shrimp, spearing, etc.

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