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The Fishes of Missouri stated that the MDC stopped stocking northerns in 1974. In the 90s may have had some naturalized populations in borrow pit lakes or ditches along the flood plain around the Mississippi in Clark and Marion counties. 

Looking at the distribution map in the guidebook there were pike collected in the Osage near bagnell and near the Maries river confluence. Those collections could have been done anytime from 194t to 95. I'll see if I can find out if there have been any recent collections of pike in the state.

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Pretty much what I expected.

The only two reservoirs I know of that they were stocked was Thomas Hill and Stockton. I think MDC may have stocked them for a longer period at Thomas Hill than they did at Stockton. Apparently Stockton didn't support the fish well for some reason, but I remember as recently as the 1990's you could still have a decent crack at them on TH.

The state record is listed as a 18lb 9oz'er from Stockton caught in 1975.

I've read sketchy reports off and on for years about them being in the Osage, a few of these reports were of fairly large fish. If there was any truth to those reports then the fish were too large to be chain pickerel. It would seem to me that the Osage would be too warm a stream for them in the summer unless some spring-fed tributaries provide some refuge during the heat. I'm having my doubts.

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If they are here and tou have never caight one your not really missing anything. I caight one 15lbs in canada. They  are real good at not fighting untill you get them into the boat then they flop all over the boat. Do not let one bite your hand if he is very large you might have a sore swollen hand for a few days that you will be picking teeth out of.

 

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I've caught plenty of them Old Plug and I disagree. I prefer catching them on the fly rod, and they make great runs but don't jump as often as bass do. I always say they fight you twice — once to the boat, and once in the boat. Unless I want to take a picture of them or keep them, I'll often release them in the water so life is easier for both of us. They happen to be fine eating as a side benefit.

I was mainly interested in seeing if any are close enough for a day-trip, but I guess not.

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MDC still says they are found in the lower Osage.  That is the extreme southern limit of their natural range, and they are very rare there and in norhern Missouri.  MDC notes that they seem to have become somewhat more often reported in the Missouri River in northwestern MO.  It's possible that the Osage fish are not a breeding population but are being replenished from strays coming down the Missouri River.

Interestingly, they have been collected from the Meramec River.  These fish were certainly strays from Indian Trails Fish Hatchery on upper Crooked Creek, tributary to the upper Meramec.  They were released into ponds at the hatchery and reproduced naturally.  This happened by in the late 1960s, and I don't think any were found much after that.

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