Saturday 5 January 2019

Another strange creature in Lake Erie.

Lake Erie is the southern edge of habitat for burbot (pronounced bur’-bit here), a big, eel-like, mottled-patterned fish that hangs out on the bottom of the lake. It’s the only freshwater member of the cod family.
“They’re such a weird, secretive fish, said Cleveland Metroparks aquatic biologist Mike Durkalec. “What it takes to catch them, they’re just aren’t a lot of people out there doing that.”
What it takes to catch a burbot is to fish at dark, in the dead of winter.The record burbot in Ohio was December 20, 1999, caught off Fairport Harbor. It was 37 inches long and 17.3 pounds. The record was broken twice in a week
There is said to be  another resident of \lake Erie, a lake monster called South Bay Bessie. Lake Erie is 241 miles long( approx 389kms) and 57 miles(approx 90kms) at its widest point.It is shallow compared to other great lakes but is said to be over 200 feet(over 65 metres) at its deepest.
The lake creature, now known as Bessie, was first reported in 1817 when the crew of a schooner reported seeing a large serpent like creature swimming in the lake. On July 8th, 1898, the Daily Register Newspaper, of Ohio reported that the lake monster was able to live on both land and in water and  was a fierce, ugly, coiling creature between 25(8 metres) and 30 feet long ( 10 metres)and at least 12 inches thick( .3 metres).
It became a bit of joke in 1912 when some hoaxers tried to pass off an exotic snake as the creature. Then more sightings began to be reported.
In 1960, Ken Golic was fishing off a pier in Sandusky when he heard what he thought were  rats. He decided to throw a couple of rocks at them but then when he got close he saw a cigar shaped creature.
In 1969, Jim Schindler was startled by a snake like creature came near South Bass Island. He said it appeared to be about 2 feet ( .6 metre)wide.
In September 1981, Theresa Kovach of Akron watched a snake like creature  from a house on the shore.She said  that "was so large that it could easily capsized a boat."
In 1983, Mary M. Landoll saw Bessie off Rye Beach in Huron. Mary was out to the front porch just before dawn when from the lake she heard a rowing sound and saw what looked like a capsized boat, but realised it was animate. It was a greenish-brown and about 50 feet
(18metres) long .It had a long neck and an eye was visible on the side of the head .
In 1985,there were two reported sightings . Tony Schill of Avon, Ohio was boating with friends north of Vermilion when they saw a dark brown snake like creature with a flat tail. Tony stated that "five humps came out of the water. No way it was a sturgeon." .In 1985, Dale Munro of Lorain was also boating when he saw something strange. He stated that it had three humps and was black.
In 1989, Gail Kasner had a sonar reading,a graph, from a boat owned by Ken Smith of Streetsboro. It appeared to show cigar shape object about 35 feet (11 metres)in length at a depth of about 30 feet.(10 metres)
Then there were several sightings in 1990 including:
Susan Seeson, of Salem saw a  creature two miles from Cedar Point. In September , Bob Soracco was jet skiing when he saw something.. He told reporters that he saw humps with gray spots. "It was very long as I moved closer and it was going down.". In the same month, Harold Bricker and his family were fishing north of Cedar Point Amusement Park when a creature swam by their boat .They described it as being 35 feet (11 metres)long and having  a snake like head. It moved as fast as their boat. Also in  September  Fire inspectors, Jim Johnson and Steve Dircks of Huron, saw the creature from a window facing Lake Erie. They described it as  black at about 30 feet( 10 metres) long.
In September 1991, Dennis Szececinski,was fishing in the bay when something long and black slithered in front of him. Also in in 1991, George Repicz shot  some video footage which he claimed showed Bessie.
In the summer of 1998, Leslee Rasgaitis reported seeing 3 black humps moving in the water of the shore of Huntington Beach, Ohio.

Could a super sized Burbot be an explanation for some of the sightings? Burbot are rare these days and probably not known by many people. Or maybe Bessie ate all the butbot hence their scarcity.

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