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Discussion in 'Fish Taxidermy' started by jonny, May 29, 2008.

  1. jonny

    jonny New Member

    somebody must know the answer to this why do sturgeon jump straight out of the water on lake Winnebago if you look out on the lake you'll see sturgeon jumping out of the water why???? thanks
  2. jim tucker

    jim tucker Active Member

    They are taking a breath. ;D ;D :D

  3. Terry

    Terry De-lighted to be living in Alaska!

    The ichthyological equivalent of the X Games? (his departure was nice, but a bit rough on the re-entry)

    The grass is greener/air is cleaner line of thought?

    Showing off for girl sturgeons?

    Jumping in their sleep, during nightmares about being hooked?

    Some sort of sturgeon gang dare/initiation?

    Just to mess with anglers who happen to be looking on?

    Fitness-conscious sturgeons doing "air-obics" as a part of their workout?

    They yearn to get away (from who knows what), much in the way of Daedalus and Icarus so many centuries ago? Or perhaps they are just fascinated with flight, such as the Wright Brothers were.

    I don't know... the only live sturgeons I've seen have been in aquariums.
  4. RDA

    RDA Well-Known Member

    cant say ive ever seen one jump!! even when hooked, they are like reeling in a log...got to be one of the most boring fish to fish for--- good way to destroy some sixers though ;) :D
  5. jonny

    jonny New Member

    for some crazy reason they shoot right out of the water they do it on the river too. Its just a question that was going around work last nite
  6. I have seen it as well. Its Amazing. The lake sturgeon FLY when hooked.

    Its possible its to remove parasites? Many if not all of the ones I have caught have had lamprey attached
  7. RDA

    RDA Well-Known Member

    wow,, only fished for em in the sacramento river- never seen on near the surface..... :eek: I could imagine being out in my little boat and having some thousand pound sturgeon fly up outta the water!!!!! :eek: ;D ;D enough to make ya feel like a BUZZ BAIT!!! :D
  8. M.T.

    M.T. Active Member

    we used to fish Black and Mullet lakes in norhtern michigan, and, thats exactly what they did. It looked like fence posts flying straight out of the water.
  9. costco man

    costco man New Member

    around here carp jump like that, old timers say it helps them expell there eggs when they are spawning, dont know if there is any truth in it but it sounds good.
  10. Scrubby

    Scrubby New Member

    someone caught them slleping and lit a match undeer their tail.
  11. sidekick

    sidekick New Member

    I've fished them on the columbia river...from the coast all the way up to multnomah falls and there's nothing like seeing a six foot sturgeion walking on the water. The only time I've never seen them jump is when you get to the big oversized ones (10 plus feet), but even then I've heard guys talk about these big boys coming out of the water.
  12. Helicity

    Helicity Squirrels – Natures Road Bumps

    Taken from http://www.landbigfish.com/articles/default.cfm?ID=566

    Why Fish Jump
    By Dennis Dobson

    "Why do fish jump?" one angler asks another. "Because they don't have fingers," the second angler replies. While this time-worn joke is just that, a joke, it is based, at least to some small degree, on actual observation. This is more than can be said for most, if not all, of the other theories I've heard over the years trying to explain this phenomenon. We'll get back to the observations that provide the genesis for this hackneyed joke in a bit. First, though, let's establish the boundaries of this discussion and debunk a few myths.

    I am not talking about why fish jump once they are hooked. I think most of us agree that a chunk of sharp steel lodged unforgivably in the mouth and the resistance provided by a tight fishing line probably offer all of the reason necessary for a fish to jump and fight once it's hooked. From lots of experience over the years I know that getting impaled by a hook is not a pleasant way to spend your time. In actual fact, it isn't getting hooked that hurts so much, at least in my case. What hurts, and can lead to PTHD (Post-Traumatic Hook Disease) is the client yanking repeatedly as hard as they can on a fishing line attatched to a hook that's imbedded in my flesh while exclaiming, "Dennis, it's hung-up! I can't break it free! And my wife wonders why I occasionally wake up in the middle of the night shaking with cold sweats and muttering un-printable curses at people she has never met). There is, as I have been known to point out, a reason we in the guide business refer to it as 'Chuck and Duck'.

    I am talking about why otherwise unmolested fish rocket out of the water, for no apparent reason, and then crash, splash or dash back beneath the surface. Often, only to jump again and yet again.

    Every angler has probably seen this happen. Over the years on Oregon's north coast, where I live and guide, I have seen thousands of salmon, trout, steelhead and sturgeon jump out of the water for no obvious reason. While guiding in Alaska I have witnessed, in addition to all five Pacific salmon species, as Dolly Varden, pike, grayling and even whitefish do the same. At one time or another over a fishing career that now spans more than forty years I have watched virtually every species of gamefish on the planet do exactly the same thing. From bass to barracuda, from sailfish to sunfish, everywhere I go fish seem to be jumping. I am sure you have seen the same thing.

    Here in salmon and steelhead country the two most often cited "scientific" reasons fish jump are either: 1) They are trying to loosen the eggs in their skeins prior to spawning or 2) They are trying to rid themselves of sea-lice. (All three of the local dominant sport fishing species - salmon, steelhead and sturgeon - are anadromous. That is, they are born in freshwater, migrate to the sea as juveniles, reach maturity in the ocean and return to freshwater to spawn. This accounts for terms such as "sea lice" although these small parasites are not limited to the ocean and are commonly found in freshwater rivers and lakes as well). Not only have these two common responses been promoted by otherwise reasonably bright people, many of whom actually work in the fishing industry in one capacity or another and should therefore know better, but they also assume facts not in evidence. Let me explain what I mean.

    Based on the reasoning described above every fish that has ever jumped out of the water has to have been either a female preparing to spawn or a fish of either sex infested with parasites. I find it extremely difficult to believe that only female fish, caught in the throes of an ancient urge to procreate, or only fish of either sex, whether ocean-going or landlocked, suffering the inconsequential itch of a parasitic stowaway are prone to jump. Frankly, my credulity just doesn't stretch that far. From lamprey eels, often a foot or more in length, on both ocean-going salmon and landlocked lake trout to barnacles on whales and marlin - often numbering in the hundreds, even thousands - any number of fish species provide a free ride for parasites far more uncomfortable than water-borne "lice".

    There is yet a third common explanation for the jumping behavior of many fish. Although based on frustration some anglers, taking the "because they don't have fingers" explanation a step further, will tell you each of those fish is simply jumping out, rolling over and flipping them the fin. While as an angler I agree there are few things quite as frustrating as casting endlessly, with few if any hook-ups, to show for the effort, to fish you know are there because you can see them jumping. I just don't take it personally.

    There is also the AFL-CIO hypothesis. I have heard some anglers comment that some species of fish, particularly salmon and steelhead, must be union fish. The reason these 'affliated' fish jump, they reason, is to check the time by the angle of the sun on the horizon to see if their coffee break is over yet. While I must admit this theory, at least at first glance, has possibilities - after all, I at least have never caught a fish that was wearing a timepiece (although I did catch one once that had swallowed a pocketwatch) - upon further investigation I am afraid this otherwise engaging piece of logic simply doesn't hold up to the cold, hard, observable facts. Yes, I know that many fish travel in 'schools' but we have no scientific data indicating that telling time is a subject covered in these schools. Besides, ask yourself this: What about Daylight Saving Time? Huh? How would any fish know, regardless of how far they might have progressed in school, when to 'Jump Forward' or when to 'Fall Back'?

    Having deflated the 'spawning female-only', 'parasite-encrusted' , 'no fingers' and 'union organized' explanations for why fish jump, let's return to simple observation for a hint or two concerning why so many species of fish, in so many varied environments, engage in this activity.

    In both science and philosophy there is a general rule known as "Occam's Razor". This rule states that an explanation for an unknown phenomena should first be attempted in terms of what is already known about it. Simply put, this means that when all else fails let what you already know about something lead you to an answer relating to something you don't yet have an answer for. Using Occam's Razor as a guideline we arrive at an answer regarding why fish jump that is simple, yet elegant, and deeply satisfying as well.

    Have you ever watched from a deer stand or on a nature show as deer frolic? Have you ever seen chimpanzes chase each other just for the joy of it? Have you ever seen bear cubs tumble and rough house? Did you watch as your youngster, in that never-never land between toddler and teen, ran pell-mell at the speed of light playing with friends simply because it felt good? If you have, then you already know why fish jump.

    I am convinced that Mother Nature sees to it that every organism above a certain point in the food chain is blessed with enough sense of self to enjoy being what they are. One universal expression of this joy is the exuberance of physical activity. The whole-body rush as adrenaline and endorphins flood the system. The invigorating flush of heat and motion. The stretch and play of supple muscles, the dynamic tension between skin and ligament, bone and tendon as we each discover our physical limits. The range of emotions your face undergoes as you fight a fish leads us to the same conclusion. First surprise, followed in short order by confusion, concentration, determination and finally pride and joy as you bring the fish to net, all point to the same reason.

    Fish jump because they can. Because it feels good. It's that simple.

    Dennis is a well known veteran professional fishing guide, writer and outdoor skills instructor. He guides in rivers and bays and the ocean along Oregon's north coast for sturgeon, salmon, steelhead and trout and in Alaska for salmon and trout. His popular articles have appeared in a variety of outdoor publications, both national and regional, and on a growing number of respected websites. He is currently working on on a book of humorous stories detailing his experiences as a fishing and hunting guide and a murder mystery featuring a fishing guide as the hero. Go figure. Copyright Dennis Dobson, Oregon Outdoors. Email Dennis at [email protected] or visit his website at http://www.oregonoutdoors.org.