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Ethan Reed
Ethan Reed

Blue Pike LINK



Indeed it was the bluest fish I had ever seen. It may have been even bluer than the walleyes we caught in May. When Greg described it, he was extremely accurate. I remembered catching one about 20 years ago on Thaddeus Lake, north of Dryden. This was only the second one I had seen.




blue pike


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Background: Conserving genetic diversity and local adaptations are management priorities for wild populations of exploited species, which increasingly are subject to climate change, habitat loss, and pollution. These constitute growing concerns for the walleye Sander vitreus, an ecologically and economically valuable North American temperate fish with large Laurentian Great Lakes' fisheries. This study compares genetic diversity and divergence patterns across its widespread native range using mitochondrial (mt) DNA control region sequences and nine nuclear DNA microsatellite (μsat) loci, examining historic and contemporary influences. We analyze the genetic and morphological characters of a putative endemic variant- "blue pike" S. v. "glaucus" -described from Lakes Erie and Ontario, which became extinct. Walleye with turquoise-colored mucus also are evaluated, since some have questioned whether these are related to the "blue pike".


Results: Walleye populations are distinguished by considerable genetic divergence (mean FST mtDNA = 0.32 0.01, μsat = 0.13 0.00) and substantial diversity across their range (mean heterozygosity mtDNA = 0.53 0.02, μsat = 0.68 0.03). Southern populations markedly differ, possessing unique haplotypes and alleles, especially the Ohio/New River population that houses the oldest haplotype and has the most pronounced divergence. Northern formerly glaciated populations have greatest diversity in Lake Erie (mean heterozygosity mtDNA = 0.79 0.00, μsat = 0.72 0.01). Genetic diversity was much less in the historic Lake Erie samples from 1923-1949 (mean heterozygosity mtDNA = 0.05 0.01, μsat = 0.47 0.06) than today. The historic "blue pike" had no unique haplotypes/alleles and there is no evidence that it comprised a separate taxon from walleye. Turquoise mucus walleye also show no genetic differentiation from other sympatric walleye and no correspondence to the "blue pike".


Conclusions: Contemporary walleye populations possess high levels of genetic diversity and divergence, despite habitat degradation and exploitation. Genetic and previously published tagging data indicate that natal homing and spawning site philopatry led to population structure. Population patterns were shaped by climate change and drainage connections, with northern ones tracing to post-glacial recolonization. Southerly populations possess unique alleles and may provide an important genetic reservoir. Allelic frequencies of Lake Erie walleye from 70-90 years ago significantly differed from those today, suggesting population recovery after extensive habitat loss, pollution, and exploitation. The historic "blue pike" is indistinguishable from walleye, indicating that taxonomic designation is not warranted.


Historically, the Blue Pike (Sander Vitreum Glaucum) was a native fish (primarily in Lake Erie) along with a smaller breeding stock in Lake Ontario. It was the most commercially harvested fish in the lakes and drainages for a good part of the last century and a regional favorite as the fish of choice for local friday night fish frys. Indeed, many old timers say the blue pike was actually tastier than their larger cousins, the yellow walleye.


There has also been reports of blue morphs caught in many lakes and rivers in Quebec's La Verendrye Park and some fish caught in lakes east of the Park (though frequency tends to drop on the eastern lakes.)


Fisheries Biologist with the University of Wisconsin, Dr. Wayne Schaefer, has been studying these blue 'morph' walleyes for a number of years and has made some interesting findings - including the following:


2. We have identified the blue pigment in the mucous as a new protein never before described in the literature. We have named the pigment "Sandercyanin". Sander is the genus name for walleye and cyanin means blue in Greek.


4. Sandercyanin occurs in the mucous of walleye in many lake and river systems in Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba. It is equally present in both blue and yellow walleye in any given lake or river system.


Haponski, A. E. and Stepien, Carol A. (2014). A population genetic window into the past and future of the walleye Sandervitreus: relation to historic walleye and the extinct "blue pike" S. v. "glaucus". BMC Evolutionary Biology 14: 133.


In one photo Stew Fishman holds a rare blue-tinted pike; in the other Lou Di Nicola holds one of the big ordinary pike they caught at Little Vermilion Lake after flying out of Red Lake, Ontario.


(NOTE. Added to original column: Di Nicola added another layer and sent a note saying it is a silver phase pike, sometimes referred to as a blue pike, which is a whole another possible column.)


790 Penllyn-Blue Bell Pike in Blue Bell, PA is a three story, Class A office building that is suited to office or medical space. The building is conveniently located near Route 476 and the PA Turnpike. The large campus sits on 2.21 acres of land and has ample parking at a rate of 4 cars per 1,000 square feet of space. Most spaces can be built to suit and a second floor medical space of 266 RSF is ready for immediate occupancy.


The blue pike rose originally comes from the mountains of southern and central Europe. It has beautiful blue-colored leaves and lush flowers, making the blue dog rose a real eye-catcher in every garden.


The blue pike rose bears its leaves until the beginning of winter. It is great for hedges or as a single plant in gardens. The small rose hips that the birds eat as food in winter are also very beautiful. 041b061a72


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