My mounted NJ “Jurassic” River Monster – The Bowfin!

Well that was indeed quite the adventure that day way down in South Jersey. The day I went after Bowfin,
the most prehistoric fish I`d ever hope to catch! Hence the reason I refer to the Bowfin as “Jurassic” River Monster is because it dates back to the Mezozoic Era…..the Jurassic Period – More than 150,000,000 years ago! The Bowfin is the only living survivor group of fish whose fossil representatives date back to when the dinosaurs roamed the earth! Definitely a very cool and unique fish at that!  
For me, it was truly an amazing fish to catch as it put up quite the gallant fight! As you can see, part of this Bowfin`s tail has been bitten off. This is where the “Eye-Spot” was on the tail…..see image below;

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The “Eye-Spot on the Bowfin`s tail is nature`s way to misdirect a would-be predator. Heck it`s much easier to grow a tail rather than a head! The idea being that a predator would be fooled into attacking/biting the Eye-Spot on the tail, rather than attacking the fish`s actually eye.  
Coupled with the fact that this was the very first Bowfin I had ever caught, added the alluring  appeal to have it mounted. So I took a bunch of pictures and took all of the Bowfin` measurements, then actually released the River Monster back into the murky depths that he came from. 
I did some research on-line that night at home and found this guy in Minnesota(His phone number and website address at bottom of this page) that creates replicas of fish. After a few discussions over the phone with Mike, I felt very confident with everything and gave him a deposit. Mike actually used to do all of Cabelas fish mounts(Note- He said 90% of the fish you see in Cabelas are replicas), then they sold him out to someone cheaper, as he refused to lower his very competitive prices. 
So what I think is very cool about this Bowfin adventure is simply this. I caught, fought, landed and released this unique fish, with his battle scars, bitten off tail and all. Had this incredible replica made of him and now he sits in my office, reminding me of that awesome adventure that day way down in South Jersey…..And that tough warrior Bowfin lives to fight another day.
And that`s very cool in my book…..
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The colors and attention to detail are just amazing with this mount! If you saw it in person, you would be absolutely stunned by it`s life-likeness. (My office lighting is sort of strange…… the Bowfin looks five times better in person!) 

If anyone is looking for an incredible artist to do this type of taxidermy work, I`d highly recommend contacting Mike at #218-839-8002 and check out his site at: 

Out & about in the New Jersey Wilderness