Author: Ocklawahaman” Paul Nosca with the assistance of Captain Erika Ritter ….
For more than 7 decades during the 20th Century the “WICHITA SPOTTED BASS” was arguably the rarest known form of black bass (family Centrarchidae, genus Micropterus species) in the world. 445 specimens had been collected between 1906 and 1928 from their “native” West Cache Creek, Oklahoma stream basin–but none since that later year. Dams had been built across that creek in several areas since then for lake recreation and to ensure drinking water sources for a federal wildlife refuge’s hoofed animal population. Was an “endemic” riverine bass extirpated because too much of its free-flowing stream environment was converted into a lacustrine one that restricted its ability to migrate for survival during southwest Oklahoma’s severe droughts? “Ocklawahaman”, obeying orders from “Uncle Sam”, was in the “right place” to conduct an independent investigation “back then” of the status of the “WICHITA SPOTTED BASS”. The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (Lawton office) provided information “back then” about the most promising segments to search for specimens–along with their belief “that the Wichita spotted bass is probably no longer present” in West Cache Creek. They would have wanted to know if I was able to collect any specimens “back then” of this presumed extinct black bass variety called the “WICHITA SPOTTED BASS”. Continue Reading