It's a symbol as much as anything, the 14.5-inch yellow perch that Tom Harris caught in the rain and east wind driving 3-foot waves Thursday. The Chicago lakefront perch and the story earn Harris Fish of the Week honors.
FOTW tops the Midwest Fishing Report each Wednesday in the Sun-Times. An extended online version appears here by midnight Tuesday.
Here's the first note from Harris:
This is the jumbo perch I got on the seawall this morning. I got it jigging an artificial maybe 50 feet off the wall. It measured in at just over 14.5", my largest perch to date. It was very fat and had shiners and small alewifes in its belly. This is my second over 13" this year but my first perch ever greater than 14". I've been a regular on the walls at montrose or belmont, it has been a blast getting to know the regulars out at the wall. The freezer is slowly but surly filling up and a fish fry for all my recent college graduate friends!
Loving the June perch season, I'll be sad to see it end.
Nor am I am looking forward to the July closure of perch fishing for adults. Harris' photo caught my eye, even though the perch itself didn't knock me out. But there were enough elements in the story that I sent a note back. And soon found out some interesting stuff.
He's doing a fresh blog at http://greatlakesangler.blogspot.com/. I say fresh because it looks at lakefront fishing with a new eye. And that's a good thing.
I really knew I liked this guy when he sent this back:
Oh I should have mentioned, the east wind has made it tough, that one I caught this morning I pulled out of 3 foot waves... Talk about hard to feel a bite. Additionally it was raining very hard, only the die hards were there this morning, other mornings have been slightly more accomatdating, but this week has been tough with either 20 mph west winds making huge currents ebbing and flowing from the harbors, or east winds kicking up debris and waves to fight with for bites. All of this, in my opinion, makes for a more interesting morning of fishing, not to mention I love seeing the city with the higher towers sticking out above the rain clouds.
And I found out, the recent U of Wisconsin at Milwaukee grad (photography) has been working on a project trying to document a good specimen of all the species of fish in the Great Lakes.
Good luck on that.
E-mail FOTW nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org.