A lifelong love of small waters and panfish has garnered me more than fistful of “BAIT!” comments over the years. Not until a recent August day along Pennsylvania’s French Creek did I encounter a fish so worthy that even I uttered the “B” word. A size 14 Adams, clearly visible, coaxed this feisty fish to hand: a four-inch emerald shiner; a fish most commonly encountered preserved in plastic bags displayed in the, yes, “BAIT” section of outdoor outfitters.


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