pike have markings which change very little and are as individual as fingerprints,
enabling the patterns to be used to recognise individual fish. This has been proved
by dye marking pike and photographing them prior to release and again on recapture*.
Knowing this enables anglers to monitor the survival, movements and growth of
pike as they are recaptured over time.
markings are not identical on each side of a pike, so it is essential to compare
pictures taken of the same flank of the fish in question. The markings display
the most distinctive shapes and spot clusters around the tail and anal fin area,
around the pelvic and pectoral fins, and on the cheeks - although markings on
the flanks can also be easily recognisable. Compare the markings in two or three
of these regions to ensure positive identifications as different photographs do
not always show the markings in all areas equally well.