Posts Tagged ‘jau’

Fish of the Week: Catfish – Jau

August 1, 2011

Our “Fish of the Week” is Catfish – Jau, whose 109 pound world record speciman was caught on an Acute Angling trip in 2005. Not surprisingly, the Jau is one of the Amazon’s largest catfish. More benthic in habit and less agile than the piraiba, its mode of battle is the application of sheer power and its prodigious weight. Although widely distributed, it is not uniformly distributed – Jau may be present in a certain river and completely absent in a neighboring one. We’re thrilled to have caught the world record size Jau to date, but we know there are bigger ones out there.

The key to ID’ing a Jau is that its body is thicker and less elongate than the piraiba. Jau has a large adipose fin and heavily boned pectorals. Adults are marked with a regular pattern of closely spaced small maroon to black spots – these are more distinct in smaller specimans. Its body has a dark olive color on its dorsum and sides, shading to off-white on the abdomen. Its lower fins are darker with distinct patterning. Adults may reach sizes of 1.4 meters and possibly exceed 200 pounds, which would obviously be a new world record.

Jau are found in the Amazon and Orinoco river basins and the countries of Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Columbia, Ecuador, Guyana and Venezuela. It ventures well upstream in high gradient rivers and is said to migrate in pursuit of migrating baitfish. Jau primarily occupy deep holes and still pools in lotic (fast water) environments in high gradient river systems. Going by common names such as Pacamao and Toruno, the world record 109 pound speciman was caught by Russell Jensen of Bronx, N.Y. on an Acute Angling trip.

Catfish - Jau

Catfish - Jau

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Amazon World Records

April 15, 2011
It’s no secret to us that the Amazon holds the biggest exotic gamefish you can find, as evidenced by our numerous record catches over the years (detailed below). Can you imagine what strength it took to bring in that 295 pound Piraiba catfish or that 109 pound Jau? (Both of which, incidentally, were caught by Russell Jensen – you can view a video montage of his record catches with Acute Angling at the bottom of this entry.)

We’re often asked, “Where are the biggest fish located and why?” To put it simply, you’ll find the biggest fish, particularly peacock bass, only in the Amazon basin. The IGFA all tackle record for Cichla temensis (the largest of the peacock bass genus) is 27 pounds, and they often weigh in over 20 pounds. These trophy fish can’t thrive in waters that go below 72 degrees, so you’ll find them in the tributaries of the Rio Negro, Rio Orinoco, Rio Branco and some tributaries of the Rio Madeira and not in Peru, Bolivia, Florida or anywhere else.

Acute Angling’s Amazon Exotic Species records with IGFA
Species Scientific Name Weight Angler Trip Year Type Status
Pescada Plagioscion squamosissimus 11 lbs. 4 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Travessao 2009 AT* Current
Piranha Serrasalmus rhombeus 7 lb and up Russell Jensen Rio Travessao various AT Past
Piranha Serrasalmus rhombeus 8 lbs. 7 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Travessao 2008 AT Current
Apapa Pellona castelnaeana 7 lb. 0 oz. Paul Reiss Rio Caura 2003 LC* Past
* Note –     A T = All Tackle Record      LC = Line Class Record

Acute Angling’s Amazon catfish records with IGFA
Species Scientific Name Weight Angler Trip Year Type Status
Piraiba Brachyplatystoma filamentosum 295 lb. 8 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Travessao 2007 AT* Current
Jau Zungaro zungaro 109 lb. Russell Jensen Rio Urariquera 2005 AT Current
Jundia Leiarius marmoratus 25 lb. 12 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Travessao 2008 AT Past
Jundia Leiarius marmoratus 28 lb. 11 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Travessao 2009 AT Current
Redtail Phractocephalus hemioliopterus 70 lb. 8 oz. Paul Reiss Rio Alegria 2003 LC* Past
Redtail Phractocephalus hemioliopterus 16 lb. 6 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Urariquera 2005 LC* Past
Jandi Rhamdia sebae 9 lb. 8 oz. Russell Jensen Rio Urariquera 2003 AT Current
* Note –     A T = All Tackle Record      LC = Line Class Record

Acute Angling’s Amazon catfish record with the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame
Species Scientific Name Weight Angler Trip Year Status
Jundia Leiarius marmoratus 23 lb. 8 oz. Larry Larsen Rio Travessao 2008 Current

Russell Jensen’s video montage of record fish caught with Acute Angling:

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