I am 12 years old, I’m hooked on fishing, and I love your magazine. This year I was fishing in northern Ontario by Kenora, on a lake attached to the English River. While I was there I caught a mysterious fish. It looked like a goldeye but it was silver and black, and around 20 inches long. When I got home I researched it on Google and I think it might be a mooneye. Can you tell me any more about these fish?
It’s great to hear from you Ryley, and I’m glad you enjoy reading the magazine!
I looked at your photo, and you are correct—it's definitely a mooneye, and a pretty good sized one, too. While goldeyes and mooneyes are not widely distributed across North America—certainly not like walleye, bass and most trout species—I would not exactly call them “rare” either. That is because when and where you find them, especially in places like the English River, they are actually quite plentiful and common. And, as I am sure you discovered, they are also a lot of fun to catch.
Because mooneyes are not widely spread geographically across North America, not very many anglers can lay claim to catching them, so you can be proud to have hooked and landed a real trophy. Well done!