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Gissert

A funny thing happened on the lake today,,,,,,

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Since it was such a nice day (meaning I did not have to work) I decided to go fishing. There were six inches of nice solid ice, so fellow FMer ChuckN and I were going to hook up and try and get some panfish.

Since his day was not nearly as nice as mine (he had to work), we agreed he would meet me out there and we would just use my Otter.

I don't have my routine down yet this year, so I forgot my usual bucket AND my waxies.

I gave him a ring, and asked him to bring both items.

I had minnows in a bag, and my favorite Little Atom finesse plastics.

I started fishing the plastics and had a couple of crappies after about an hour or so. One was a really nice size fish, and since I had no bucket, I kind of held it with a boot agaist the canvas flaps and tub. I did not want them flipping back down the hole, nor did I want them thumping in the tub. I also did not want them to freeze outside.

After about 20 minutes, I was kind of surprised that that crappie was still flopping vigorously. Thus, I squeezed it tighter between my boot and the canvas/tub. The flopping continued, but I was working a fish on my vex, and paid it no mind.

Finally, I noticed a distinct tugging on the fish, and looked down to see what the heck was going on.

It was then I about launched myself through the canvas.

A mink had managed to slip between the tub, and the canvas flap. Since I did not have the front canvas skirts velcroed together, he had managed to work his way in and grab the fish by the tail. The only thing keeping the fish from being a huge meal was my size 11 Mickey Mouse boot. All I could see was his head, the rest of his body was between the canvas and the tub.

I let out a bellow, and gave him a good kick with my boot heel and he was gone. My heart was in my throat, and after a few minutes I calmed down. Then I picked up the fish, and there were several bite marks and a shredded dorsal and tail fin. He must have grabbed it a couple times before I finally noticed.

A few minutes later Chuck came and we had a good laugh.

Now in three decades of ice fishing, I have had the odd muskrat pop up a hole, and have seen beavers and big snappers through a dark house hole. This takes the cake for the oddest thing I have ever experienced while ice fishing.

I hate to think of the bedlam that could have ensued had that critter managed to get all the way inside. Those little devils have some nasty choppers.

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I have caught a lot of mink on the trap line and yes they are rather nasty about being restrained against their will, on the other hand I have had wild BWCA mink fearlessly come up and chew on a walleye as I was cleaning it on the shoreline several times and they only seemed interested in getting a free meal and showed no interest in me. It is always fun to see a critter in its own enviorment and realise we are the visitor.

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That was quite the surprise, Gissert! It's too bad I missed it, I'd like to hear you scream like a girl... grin

Thanks for inviting me out for a quick fish trip on that wonderful little lake. You were an awesome guide finding the spot on the spot. wink No waxies necessary, Little Atoms did just fine.

DSC01947.jpg

Glad to be back on the ice!

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Too funny laugh Years ago I was fishing a river on the North Shore of Lake Superior and I had a nice King Salmon(about 17#) on a short stringer tied to a tree. Had a humorous 10 minutes or so watching an Otter try to figure out how to get that fish. Every time he got close the fish would pitch a fit and go absolutely nuts on the stringer and scare the carp out that Otter. I was laughing so hard I had to take a break from fishing and just watch.

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A couple of winters ago I was fishing for crappies and sunnies on Vermilion with a couple of other guys.

We were set up around 100 yards from shore, a mink showed up out there and the first thing that it did was to crawl right into one of the guys minnow bucket and start eating his bait! He finanlly had to put the lid on the bucket to save his minnows! The critter then decided to check out my house and came right inside of the house with me thru the open front door. I let him sniff around for a while until he discovered my crappies and tried to steal one. I then chased him off.

He promptly went over to a few crappies that one of the other guys had laying on the ice , grabbed one, and took off for shore with it. He got about half way to shore when an eagle that had been watching us decided that it wanted that fish also. It swooped down 2 times and hit that mink, each times rolling it over, but the mink never let go of that crappie and eventually made it to shore with it's stolen meal! smile

Cliff

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We pulled the boat to shore one time, we into the house to get some fish cleaning equipment, water, etc. When we came back to the landing, the stringer full of crappies was missing. The next winter when putting out the fish house, we found the stinger under the fish house in a hole that was dug under the house. Needless to say, we never left a stringer waiting to be cleaned laying on the ground again.

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Good eye!

I do believe Gissert scorched his pants on the heater landing that walleye for me. He mentioned "fire" just before that fish rose up. It was a long battle on light spinning gear, but that Jason Mitchell panfish rod and 2 lb test held up well!

Hey Gissert- were your pants ok? I forgot to inquire after the fact. lol

I've never seen a mink. Great stories!

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Funny stuff Gissert, I lost a tulibee to I'm guessing a member of the weasel family last weekend. I put it up on the dock on shore, then I went out to see if I could get a couple more for the smoker. Came back and it was gone, I tried my best to find some tracks to identify what I gave a free meal to with no luck. But I could see a trail of where it dragged it down the dock, unless that was a cougar tail track. smile

ChuckN...Nice 'eye, nice pic.

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