It looked just like a giant aquarium gold fish, but this crappie on the end of a Wisconsin angler’s line was no gold fish.
Turns out the golden hued fish was a type of black crappie that likely had a pigment mutation, creating the golden coloration.
That was the conclusion of fish biologist Ryan Koenigs with the Department of Natural Resources in Oshkosh.
“We were as stumped as the angler was when it came in. We had never seen anything like this,” Koenigs told Fox News in Wisconsin.
The fish had the same bright golden color that you might find in an aquarium gold fish, although much bigger and it resembled the other crappies in size and appearance just without the typical white, green and black spotted pattern of black crappies.
Steve Volkman, who caught the fish, said it was quite a surprise.
“My magical golden crappie appeared, and we were pretty startled,” he said.
Fishing buddy Donnie Lornson said he didn’t believe his eyes at first.
“I looked at it, and thought my glasses were playing tricks on me,” said Donnie Lornson of Menasha. “When he pulled it out, I says, you got an orange crappie there. Yeah, it was different.”
Koenigs, with the DNR, said reports of golden crappies have come in before, the last one about three years ago, adding that it’s likely a once-in-a-lifetime event.
Volkman said he would have the fish mounted and preserved.
Photo credit: Donnie Lornson via Fox News