Mark Spitzer is not just a fisherman, he is a lover of fish. As a nationally known author (Seasons of the Gar, Return of the Gar), writing about fish and their issues is what he does best. In this new blog series, Spitzer shares his experiences traveling the American West while researching a select number of freshwater fish, some of which are considered monstrous or freaky or hideously grotesque.
During this time of planetary crisis—with mass species extinction, global warming, rapid deforestation, oil spills, and increasing numbers of hurricanes, droughts, and floods—the preservation of specific niches of the ecosystem is imperative. With this in mind, Spitzer combines his first-person narrative with history, science, folklore, fishery management, and politics to place some of America’s most unusual aquatic creatures in perspective. His goal is to protect fisheries and promote effective environmental stewardship in order to keep the western wilderness healthy and strong.
Where in the West Is Mark Spitzer is a new blog series that follows Spitzer as he catches, examines, and celebrates these underwater underdogs that help make life on this planet more colorful and diverse. The series will track the exploits and insights of this fish-lover as he noodles for flathead catfish in Oklahoma, snags paddlefish in Missouri, trotline- and electro-fishes American eels in Arkansas, studies razorback suckers in Arizona, bounty hunts for pikeminnows (squawfish) in Washington State, horses in sturgeon in Oregon, attends a burbot festival in Utah, stirs up Asian carp in Kansas, breaks the state record for largest yellow bullhead caught in Nebraska, and investigates every aspect of the ultimate fish: the mysterious gar. Named a “hard-core fisherman” by Nebraska Game and Parks, Spitzer’s catches are already making headlines.
Don’t miss the full version of this incredible tale, which can be found in Beautifully Grotesque Fish of the American West (heading downstream in 2017).