Book Review: Fishing for Buffalo

15 posts / 0 new
Last post
zippyFX
zippyFX's picture
Book Review: Fishing for Buffalo
<p><span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">Fishing for Buffalo</span></p> <p><span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">A Guide to the Pursuit and Cuisine of Carp, Suckers, Eelpout, Gar, and other Roughfish</span></p> <p><span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">By Rob Buffler and Tom Dickson</span></p> <p><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> During the species of the week discussion on Gar (http://www.roughfish.com/~roughfis/content/species-week-longnose-gar) &nbsp;Andy posted a link to an article on Gar (http://www.blackboxresale.com/Images/misc/Longnose_Gar.pdf) which had a sidebox mentioning this book.&nbsp;<span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">I looked it up and was curious; Having a gift card burning a hole in my wallet I ordered the book. I am really glad I did. I really enjoyed this book. It was a nice light read with a pleasant folksy narrative. It has provided me with a informal reference on roughfishing with obscure anecdotal details I am not sure I would have found else where.</span></p> <p><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">This book discusses 41 different roughfish and presents each in an interesting manner. Probably my favorite element of the book is that the authors start with a historical and cultural work up which either describes how a native species was seen by early explorers and settlers or how non-native species of roughfish were introduced and their impacts. It describes how the popularity of fish in local culture grew and waned and why. Interestingly, when applicable, it also provide information on how these roughfish played a part in the lives Native Americans. The authors describes how many of the once abundant roughfish were fished to the point of collapse and describe the slow road to recovery. The book also provide an informal, but informative, description of how the fish lives, feeds, and reproduces, and a description of the habitats it prefers all in an unstructured informal format. This is not a textbook just a nicely laid out read.</span><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">Also provided are fishing techniques to catch each of the roughfish and recipes for each of the roughfish. Interestingly enough the authors liked the taste of each and everyone of the roughfish. Apparently they seem to never found a fish they did not like.&nbsp;</span><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">This book is based on fishing experiences in and around Minnesota, Wisconsin and some of the southern states; and the book is peppered with details about fishing in these areas. &nbsp;It still remained relavant to me because Ontario is close by. I found that this did not detract from the value of the book as there is an nice overlap via the Great Lakes and the fact that most of the fish discussed are in my local waters.&nbsp;</span><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">The book was originally published in 1990 and it looks like it was updated in 2009 with a glossy new cover and likely a slightly changed format. Unfortunately the pictures in this book are all in black and white and can be dated and grainy. Had I seen this book in the stores I may not have picked it up because of the pictures as a quick flip through it may have turned me off of it. That would have been a shame as the information in the book stands the test of time though and is as applicable today as when the book was written.</span><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">An interesting read and perspective on roughing in our part of the world that kept me reading and entertained. </span></p> <p><span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">If you have read the book and have any comments chime in!</span></p> <p><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">Parts of the book can be seen on Google here:</span><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <a href="http://books.google.ca/books/about/Fishing_for_Buffalo.html?id=6fSCl4YVup4C&amp;redir_esc=y" rel="nofollow" style="color: rgb(14, 66, 112); text-decoration: initial; font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" target="_blank">http://books.google.ca/books/about/Fishi...edir_esc=y</a><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;">Another positive review of the book can be found here:</span><br style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" /> <a href="http://www.flyfishohio.com/fishing_for_buffalo.htm" rel="nofollow" style="color: rgb(14, 66, 112); text-decoration: initial; font-family: Tahoma, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px;" target="_blank">http://www.flyfishohio.com/fishing_for_buffalo.htm</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
andy
andy's picture
Great book!

FFB is absolutely the best book out there regarding fishing in the "Rough".  It may lack solid tactical angling information on some species, but let's face it there was no roughfish.com back when it was written...they lacked the collective knowledge of real Roughfishermen that we enjoy here on the Internet.  That being said, the authors did a great job of setting up a species with historical, culinary and simple habitat information.  It was leaps and bounds above anything else that had been written.  Also, their philosophies on keeping angling simple and breaking out on your own to discover what Roughfishing can teach you is a breath of fresh air when compared  to virtually all other American books on angling.  It was just two friends attempting to understand and angle for all those fish which had no prior instruction manual to aid in catching them.  They traveled around and had adventures along the way.  The words that they wrote affected Corey and I greatly when the book came out, and surely spawned a whole new breed of angler.

Tom is a friend of mine, and my brother Corey corresponds with him often as well.  He is blown away by the community we have built here with this website, and encourages us to keep striving to understand angling for these species in a World that wants them to be wiped out in favor of bass or walleyes.  In the last chapter somewhere I believe there was a message about picking up the torch and continuing to expand on the wonderful world of Roughfishing, and that in my mind is us right here at roughfish.com.  I believe there is a link to our website in the book as well.

 

Cast_and_Blast
Cast_and_Blast's picture
FFB is one of my favorites. 

FFB is one of my favorites.  I only wish there were more books about roughfish to break the walleye/bass/trout book monotony.  If someone here would write another roughfish book, I would buy it.

 

BTW, would Buffler or Dickson be interested in writing another roughfish book?

Eli
Eli's picture
Great read. I thoroughly

Great read. I thoroughly enjoyed it and go back to it now and again.

Another book I found very informative is American Course Angling: Modern Baitfishing Tactics for the Overlooked Species by Brook Landis

Eli

 

 

Hengelaar
Hengelaar's picture
Cool Book

An awesome dude gave me one of the old ones last fall. Very cool book, if you take into account when it was written.

The cover on the new one is STOOPID!!!

 

Don't know about the authors, though. I can't believe they're awesome books...

Fishn sure is neat

BemidJim
BemidJim's picture
I don't post much.  I don't

I don't post much.  I don't like to repost what somebody has already said, so I will try to differentiate what I have to say about this book from what's been posted.

I own several other fishing books and I have not read one of them cover to cover.  That's the great thing about this book: it's a FUN read.  Those other books drone on and on and on about what type water I'm fishing, what period the fish are in, what category the weather fits into.  I'm a scientifically minded person, so this categorization is important I know, but it sure makes books about fishing that read more like text books.

The book does lack some tactical information.  I say "some" because for most species there is good tactical information, but some others (like Buffalo) are lacking that.  The book definitely makes up for that, though in it's do-it-yourself, anybody-can-do-this attitude.  This isn't a closed club.  We're accepting memberships all the time and the dues are free.

garman
garman's picture
FFB

I can say with no hyperbole that Fishing For Buffalo is the reason language was developed.

OK, maybe some hyperbole.

To me, FFB opened up new worlds of fishing.  Targeting fish other than the usual increased my fishing opportunities many times over.  Instead of a choice of this or that pond for bass, I could get gar in the lakes or drum in the big river or redhorse in the streams.

So props to FFB and roughfish.com!  Thanks!

 

Gunnar
Gunnar's picture
I like FFB, but it was a

I like FFB, but it was a first step and I think it's time we took the next step with a fuller, more up-to-date, better looking book. If anyone writes the next book, I'm a book designer. Call me. I promise not to put a species on the cover that's different from any species mentioned in the title (or to at least make it so completely different that there's no way to think it was a misidentification).

 

I've been vaguely working on a plan for a book about suckers, but who knows when or if it will ever come together (and I envision it being more a science and history book with fishing in it, not a fishing book).

 

If we were to crowd-source a book, I think we could come up with something pretty awesome.

 

Redhorse ID cheatsheets, gars, suckers: moxostoma.com


2020: 10 days fishing 11 species 0 lifers. 2019: 34/45/13 2018: 39/40/5

Dan
Dan's picture
Fishing for Buffalo was

Fishing for Buffalo was indeed a milestone in roughfishing literature and it seems like high time for a worthy follow-up.  There are so many knowledgeable people contributing, and there is so much good info up here already, that a crowd-sourced approach could make for a truly remarkable book.  Like Gunnar, I'd be willing to help out if anyone decides to take the lead.  I have some experiencing editing educational and techincal publications on fisheries that might be handy for such a project, but unfortunately I'm not as fun as Rob and Tom...

TonyS
TonyS's picture
One of my favorite books! 

One of my favorite books!  Glad I got an old though, the new cover sucks. 

 

As for a follow up... I dunno.  The topic has maybe grown beyond the scope of book writing?  I'm confident that we could write a book the size of FFB on Suckers alone!  Much less trying to be moderately inclusive.  I think this website does a fantastic job of extending beyond what FFB started with.   Crowd-sourcing an dynamic resource is the way of the future, of that I'm sure.

Dan
Dan's picture
Very true, Tony.  This site

Very true, Tony.  This site is the living successor to FBB already.  I guess it is just my pre-digital age nostalgia coming through.  I remember how thrilled I was to find FBB mentioned in an In-Fisherman blurb.  It was so great to get a copy, read it cover to cover, and know that other people were out there appreciating the unsung treasures of the aquatic world.  Now this site fills the same role for anyone who cares to google 'roughfish', and then some.

Gunnar
Gunnar's picture
But no unfocused teenager is

But no unfocused teenager is going to find a copy of this website on the shelf in their weird old uncle's garage or in a pile of used books outside a store. No one gets a website for Christmas or birthday. The web is ephemeral. I love this site, but it could cease to exist some day. It probably will--all websites will. Books don't do that.

And I'm a book junkie all the way.

 

Redhorse ID cheatsheets, gars, suckers: moxostoma.com


2020: 10 days fishing 11 species 0 lifers. 2019: 34/45/13 2018: 39/40/5

Jknuth
Jknuth's picture
I agree Gunnar. 

I agree Gunnar. 
I want to work on a few books and have a feeling it will happen soon.
One is a bit more scientific, I want to make the suckers and redhorse of North america. I want to Illustrate every one. 
I plan on it and may attempt a Kickstarter project this next summer to do it.

There are other books in the works, it will happen.

 

TonyS
TonyS's picture
Good points and I too love

Good points and I too love books.  Whomever opts to take on anything expanding beyond FFB has a daunting task of sorts.  LIke I said, the communal knowledge has expanded so far.  I don't know if the logical set would be to keep the geographical region small, reduce the historical information, maybe focus on tactics but only for the comparatively common and widespread species?

 

Either way - if somebody writes one I'd be glad to help and if it is any good I'd be glad to buy it

Muskymags
Muskymags's picture
Good Idea Guys!

Well, since we seem to be revamping the species pages a bit; that would probably be a good start to a new "Bible" of all fish.  If we set up a "Book Forum" and added to it, mixed it up a bit, add more pictures, add more tactics, and JUST DO IT I think we could do something awesome.  I would think if we recognized all major species over a pound (and maybe a chapter on common micros), we could get alot of interest.  Make a freshwater fish encyclopedia, a all this Roughfish.com book!  This way we are keeping the emphasis on the love of angling and we're not trying to be elitest towards any species (however maybe a little emphisis like only 1 page for Walleye and 2 for Drum).  A Walleye guy would pick up the book cause we have them covered in the book, but then as he flips through the pages he notices Highfin Carpsuckers and Spotted Suckers, etc. in the book and then we've done our jobs.  We made a dyed in wool Walleye hound interested in these species that he never knew existed.  It would have to be a thicker book than FFB and maybe have a page or 2 for each species.  Josh's illustrations are so good that he could be our Joe T. and have a clear quality illustration along with photos of different color phases like we're seeing in the Bowfin post now (clear phase, patterned phase, and spawn green).  This is exciting and an awesome idea, I'm all in and will help all I can!