FTR Digital Editor’s Picks of the Year

[dropcap size=small]W[/dropcap]hat a year 2014 has been for In the past 12 months we’ve seen sweeping changes to both the landscape of our own website and the industry as a whole. Along the journey, we’ve (hopefully) kept you abreast of those changes while giving you something to talk about at the office as well. And before the ball drops on 2014, we’re giving you a quick Top 5 of our most curious posts of 2014.

5. Fishermen Snag Bald Eagle

A grey Canadian dawn brought with it the extraordinary story of Randy Sadler, who in addition to founding Vancouver’s Kitetail Lures managed to become British Columbia’s most notorious eagle fisherman. The story landed Randy in the headlines of the local news broadcast as startled onlookers watched him spoon feed a child-sized raptor on his boat.


4. Endangered Species on Your Dinner Plate

In a terrible turn of circumstance, hungry Americans discovered their favorite catfish dinner might not be what they thought. In an in-depth query that kicked off FTR’s new website redesign last February, Digital Editor Joe Sills got hands on in the kitchens of America and the murky waters of Southeast Asia to discover the roots of an endangered fish known as the iridescent shark that’s still landing on plates across the world.

Trade and fishing boats rest on the banks of the Mekong River near Luang Prabang, Laos. Photo: Shannon O’Donell,
Trade and fishing boats rest on the banks of the Mekong River near Luang Prabang, Laos. Photo: Shannon O’Donell,

3. Geobass Scores Megafish near Kalahari Desert

The Geobass team from Costa scored more than a few bizarre bonus points this year for adventures in South America, Papau New Guinea and Mexico, but their strangest tale of all found the crew in Africa. There, the ragtag band of fly fishermen spent three months hunting down golden bass on a continent where maps point to dry lake beds and everything in the water seemed poised to kill you.


2. Salmon Cannon Debuts in Pacific Northwest

Mankind’s greatest invention, the salmon cannon, was introduced this year in the Pacific Northwest when Whoosh Innovations began posting YouTube videos of fish flying through the air and—eventually—into the studios of comedy host John Oliver.

1. Mutant Bass Change Sex in America’s Rivers

Some things in life simply do not compute. That’s the case in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, where bass have begun to swap genders in an event that researchers are blaming on chemical hormones running into the rivers. The most deeply affected area appears to be near Hershey Pennsylvania—home of those holiday chocolates that are sitting on your desk right now.



What was your favorite FTR story of 2014? Drop us a line in the comment section below to let us know what you want to see more of in 2015. Go ahead! Don’t be shy.