Fish of Early Summer


On weekends, I conduct fish surveys in my local river. The survey is simple, consisting of setting a net at one spot and pulling it up. I’ve been doing this for several years now, so I have a good understanding of the patterns of fish we catch. By the way, I live in Hanyu City, Saitama Prefecture, which is located in the Kanto Plain, just like the metropolis of Tokyo.In Japan, rivers closer to cities tend to have more non-native fish species in freshwater environments, and this place is no exception. Half of the fish we catch are non-native species.

Now, it’s early summer. The fish that start appearing around this time of year are channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus). Unfortunately, this fish is also a non-native species. It’s a tasty fish, probably brought here for culinary purposes.

In the area where I live, the river’s water level drops significantly during the winter. In spring, the irrigation of rice paddies begins, and the rainy season (the wet season between spring and summer) starts, causing the river’s water level to rise. It is in accordance with this increase in water level that we start catching these fish.

Feeling the change of seasons through non-native fish is, well, a somewhat indescribable feeling.

This is a fish guide of Saitama Prefecture.

Fish Guide of Saitama Prefecture