Home Fishing Rare Piebald Tarpon Caught in Florida

Rare Piebald Tarpon Caught in Florida

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One of the allures of fishing is that on any given trip, something remarkable can happen. Obviously, it doesn’t happen often, but it’s one of things that keeps you going back. Angler George Siebel of New York recently experienced the remarkable. He was on vacation with his wife in Florida, where he chartered the services of Capt. Clark Wright to fish the Gulf Coast. On this trip, George not only hooked into a 130-lb. tarpon, the specimen he caught had the wacky coloring of a koi.

See the amazing pictures and learn the incredible details of this once-in-a-lifetime fishing trip in this article from Sport Fishing.

piebald_tarpon2On June 5, Capt. Clark Wright, who runs a charter service on Florida’s west coast, reeled in something that he has never seen before.

“In my 20 years of tarpon fishing, I’ve never seen a tarpon like this before,” Wright tells Sport Fishing. “I told the visiting angler and my mate that we had to get this tarpon to the boat.”

Wright said that seeing it from afar, the tarpon started to jump and roll, but had an orange tinge and spots on it. They caught the tarpon at 7:30 a.m. on a live blue crab off Anna Maria’s coast, along with his mate Matt Smithman. They were on a mission from there on out — to get a closeup of the tarpon.

“We were hooting and hollering,” he says. “The angler, George Seibel, might be the luckiest angler out there right now. He came down from New York with his wife and caught this tarpon. We took a DNA sample and successfully released him. He lives to fight another day.”

Kathryn Guindon’s, an assistant research scientist at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission’s (FWC) Tarpon Genetics Recapture program, first question to Capt. Wright was the expected, “Did you take a DNA sample?”

“I have heard reports over my past ten years of tarpon like this, but never has someone retrieved a DNA sample to send to us,” says Guindon. “It looks similar to a koi fish.”

Photos: Sport Fishing

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