Buffalo, Black pmk00001



Date Caught: 
Monday, August 17, 2015


krazyk's picture

Wow, that is an incredible catch! Congratulations!

Chain Pickerel: All the bad assery of a Northern Pike wrapped up in a smaller, prettier package.

Deftik's picture

\m/ Hell yeah

Graceclaw's picture


andy's picture

Wow, that is a truly magical beast.  I would love to see some more photos of that fish.  Congrats on a super tough catch!

Divemaster's picture

Awesome catch! Takes some real skill to catch Black and Bigmouth Buffs!

Hengelaar's picture

Love the pic, too.

Lookade MOUF on dat critter!

Many congrats, man, that is an amazing catch.

Fishn sure is neat

Eli's picture

Right on Pat!

Would love to get some details on that catch...




Dr Flathead's picture

Thats a bad ass catch dude!  Congrats!

the bearded angler's picture

Beauty of a catch and I'm sure a good fight!!

pmk00001's picture

Thanks guys, I still can't believe I caught this fish.  All credit goes to Moose,.  

We were fishing for shovelnose sturgeon, earlier in the day I asked Moose if anything else was possible from the river that I didn't have on my lifelist and he jokingly said Black Buffalo.  Around 1:00 AM on a still, hot, and buggy night I recast, put the rod down but picked it up because I wasn't totally happy with where I had cast.  In that short time I'd lost my worm so I rebaited and nailed the cast this time.  

About 5 minutes later my rod started do some funny shakes and after some consultation I decided to hit it.  The rod took on its full bend and the fish slowly moved off.  At one point early in the fight the fishes back broke the water and we knew it was a decent buffalo and were both pretty psyched.  Moose was the first one to get a look at the lips and he knew right away what it was.  It got really serious really fast once we knew what we had on.  The fish fought really well but eventually sucumbed to the pressure and Moose bear hugged the beast right in the water.  

After a few pictures we hung around for a couple more hours in a sort of stunned happiness.  A capture like this is what makes fishing what it is, you never know what might be on the end of the line.  Thanks again Alex!  


Dr Flathead's picture

The close up pic of that things lips is crazy.  Like a cauliflower lipped ghost alien from Neptune.  A stunning beast for real.  I tried that spot last evening for several hours.  Cant believe how low the water is there.  Got two flats and a channel. 

johnny's picture

Wow.  Just wow.  And bump what Doc said, those lips are insane.  Congrats!

Just your run of the mill Orvis Boy.  Fly fishing elitist.  I cannot hear you over my false casting.  All guided trips every day.

Fishing for compliments since 88.

Carp Chaser's picture

Oh my gosh, freaking amazing.

"There's always a bigger fish"

Outdoors4life's picture

Very cool. 

I knew you were with alex with the awesome fishing spots from your other fish you posted. 

It is all perspective!

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Mike B's picture

That is an amazing catch. Are they pale like that because the water is murky?

mike b

WreckedAngler's picture

that is awesome, i hope to tangle with any kind of buffalo .... hopefully this year.

Cast_and_Blast's picture

That is a sweet catch Pat.  Congrats! 

D.T.'s picture

That is truley an amazing catch. The fish looks so majestic. Not to mention HUGE. Very front page worthy. Congratulations!

Moose439's picture

Man, that thing still makes me moist...

pmk00001's picture

Thanks!  Mike, I'm not totally sure why the fish was as light as it was, the water was pretty murky maybe that had something to do with it.  It looked even paler in person.

Dr Flathead's picture

I've often wondered the same about flathead catfish colors.  Sometimes their mustard yellow.  Maybe their colors are affected by fronts, water clarity, water temp, diet, sex or even moods?  Maybe even the depth of water their hanging in.  Theres really no rhyme or reason to it.  I've caught ghost white smallmouth buffs on the same outing as I've got emerald greenish dark looking ones.  From the same spot too.  And I've got yellow cats on the same night as brown or gray ones.  Maybe ever water levels rising and falling might have an effect? 

Outdoors4life's picture

I know that my native fish in my tank can change color from mood. It is odd to see them dark and light in one day. 

It also depends on it's surroundings. If they are at the bottom they take on a darker appearance and up high they get more pale.


It is all perspective!

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Found and read a couple of interesting academic journal articles about pallor (paleness) and albinism in freshwater fish (unable to post a link with smartphone) that reported colour intensity can be affected by hormonal changes, i.e. spawning, predation, territory protection or water chemistry. But I wonder if this particular fish may be an albino or near (lucitic) albino. The distinctive pink colouration at the base of the fins and tail, as well as the red reflection in the eyes, and translucent blue colour in the fins might be indicators of albinism? I'm definitely no ichthyologist - just equally as curious about the colour. Any additional thoughts or theories? This is an amazing, remarkable fish no matter what caused its mezmerizing white colour...the opaque and translucent shades of white, pink and blue make it look like an Australian opal!
Mike B's picture

There must be something to it. I've been noticing it for years and the paleness is pretty consistent across species I fish for. I was fishing in the Mackenzie River of the NWT last week and the pike I caught were much more pallid than clearwater specimens. As a prime example, my burbot from the Liard River are much paler than their lake kin. The walleye I catch from muddy rivers are pale too. Maybe it's something more noticeable with species that can be found in both clear and muddy water. That said, this buffalo certainly looks like an abino but I presume the red eye is from the camera.

In any event, I tend to prefer the look of pallid fish over dark ones. They just look cooler. That's why I really love BlueEye's pallid sturgeon .. and now this fish too.

mike b

pmk00001's picture

When I used to carp fish a lot I saw a few fish that we described as "two tone", meaning they were half light and half dark.  Here's an example my buddy caught:


The interesting thing was that in this fishes case it was permanent, we caught it a number of times and it always had this coloration.

TonyS's picture

I've caught pale fish of various species, generally it seems more common from water that is muddy or deep but like others have mentioned you can catch a pale fish mixed in with darker fish and vice versa.  I've seen it with fish from deep water in Superior especially and muddy water from Colorado to WI.  The Tannin (bog) stained waters common to NW WI, were I grew up, tend to produce a lot of fish with very rich, dark colors.  Not melianistic or anything like that, almost like their colors are over saturated.  I've noticed some gender differences too.  Someone told me once male and female Lake Sturgeon tend to be different colors but I forgot which is which.  Male River Redhorse are always a bit darker than females, in a few local rivers in June some of the males get a dark blue-ish color - which is crazy to see.

Mike B's picture

Right Tony, deep water also produces pale fish. I've seen that a lot with pike while trolling deep humps for lake trout, And also what you describe with the tannic water and the more vividly coloured fish.

I caught this little pike out of a tea-coloured beaver pond. The head and black were almost pure black while its sides were golden/bronze.

These colour traits are pretty consistent up here so if they're not down south I wonder if it's a north/Canadian Shield vs. south thing.We certainly have more deeper water while muddy water is relatively rare unless you're around the big rivers.

mike b

drawer.bli's picture

PMK, that is simply awesome. Mindblowing. Incredible. What a fish....


Mike, that is a pretty pike!