To begin with, this very original species of underwater fauna needs to be recognized. And it’s not difficult to recognize him: he has a curved spike on his head. This is not common. More on the body of the sculpin, about 10-13 centimeters long, there is nothing remarkable: a pale gray back, a white or yellowish abdomen, the eyes are oriented upward. Except that the oblong and wide fins have a distinctive feature: they are covered with gray spots. We have basically two varieties of this goby: narrow-necked and red-finned. The first has a narrow head and wide tail, and the second has long fins on the abdomen.
In general, sculpin is quite common in the world. Most often found in European water bodies. It got its name for the way of life, which it tries to spend under stones, in holes dug in soft soil and sand. The sculpin has one more name – pechkur.
The sculpin always chooses shallow water as a habitat, the depth does not attract it. These fish, more than two individuals, do not gather in one place, swimming in a flock is not for them.
The scaffold’s menu is very diverse, although he is rather a small predator: small fish, toad caviar, water beetles, woodlice, crustaceans of various species. Usually this goby is inactive, but when hunting or running away from large predators, it shows considerable agility. Thanks to her, he himself rarely becomes someone’s prey.
Due to the secretive lifestyle, it was not possible to fully study the spawning process of the sculpin. It is known that for spawning, in early May, he builds some semblance of a nest. It digs a small hole with its tail, into which the female lays eggs. The eggs of the sculpin are red-yellow, in the hole there are 200-300 pieces of them. Then the male fertilizes them and from that moment becomes her guard. Until the offspring hatch (this is about 4-5 weeks) and after hatching, the father is the zealous guardian of the babies. During this period, he is very aggressive.
Catching a sculpin is difficult, and the result is usually very modest. Therefore, the rules for this type of fishing are little known. During the day, it is impossible to catch this fish in the usual way. In the shallow water where he lives, any careless movement in the water disperses all the fish. And the scaffold does not protrude from under the stones unnecessarily. Another thing is at night. In the light of the moon, these fish leave their hiding places.
If you catch the sculpin with a hook, then a light fishing rod no more than two meters long is quite suitable. On the line you only need a sinker and a hook number 6-8 with a worm. The fishing process looks rather boring: you need to look out for the place where the sculpin lies at the bottom, then try to throw a hook there and hope that the fish will notice and swallow it. If this happens, the sculpin will remain where it was. Therefore, you should not wait for a bite, you need to hook. It will not be possible to fish for a long time in one place, podkamenniks do not live in a heap.
Since these fish live in shallow water and in clear water, people got the hang of catching them in another way, with a long-handled fork. True, it is more difficult and requires dexterity and patience. It is necessary, creating as little noise as possible in the water, to sneak up to the place where the sculpin sits at the bottom, hit him sharply with a fork and immediately pull it out. If all goes well, the fish will be pricked with a fork. Loach is caught in the same way.
The stonefoot meat is considered a delicacy, very tasty and healthy. It turns red during cooking.
It is difficult to use this fish as bait. In addition to hunting burbot, it is unlikely to do anything else. As bait, he behaves briskly, tries to hide under a stone.