Illinois Outdoors at PrairiestateOutdoors.com
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Jeff Lampe
Jeff Lampe

Jeff Lampe has been outdoor writer at the Journal Star in Peoria for 12 duck seasons. He lives in Elmwood with his wife Monica, sons Henry, Victor and Walter, and Llewellin setter Hawkeye. A native of Buffalo, N.Y., he is an avid fan of the Bills and still has mental scars from four consecutive Super Bowl losses. Outside of hunting and fishing, Lampe's main passion in Illinois was Class A boys basketball (which sadly no longer exists). Former publisher of the Class A Weekly newsletter, Lampe is a co-author of "100 Years of Madness" and "Classical Madness," both books focusing on prep basketball in Illinois.

Illinois Outdoors
 

Scattershooting

A Web log by Jeff Lampe of the Journal Star

Illinois hunting and fishing

Longear beauties

May 18, 2009 at 04:13 PM

Fishing Sunday afternoon at Benton Lake with guide Jason Johns (who works with Todd Gessner), I ran into an old friend.

The longear sunfish.

Most of my experience catching them has been on the Mackinaw River. So I was a bit surprised to find them at Benton Lake, a small lake surrounded by homes.

But it was a pleasant surprise, because in my book they are the most beautiful freshwater fish in Illinois. For that matter, a spawning longear is every bit as spectacular as any other tropical fish.

That’s why one of these days I’m going to follow through and stock an aquarium with longears.

Until then, I’ll just have to be content with hooking into the feisty little rascals and admiring them before releasing them.

 

 

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