Trying to think of something to blog about today when I was asked a familiar question, “What are these black specks on my fish?”
There are a variety of fish parasites that are present in our waters. They are there all the time and nothing can be done about that. From time to time, those parasites will be obvious on or in the fish.
Of course the first concern is usually if those fish are safe to eat?
There are no parasites of our Nebraska fish that are a threat to humans especially if the fish are thoroughly cooked. I would however, be careful if your favorite sushi bar was located next to a bait shop.
In most cases the parasites can be trimmed or removed from the fillets and the fish prepared as usual. In the worse cases, no one likes the thought of eating parasites and the fish get discarded.
Years ago we had a little pamphlet with the same title as this blog. It was a short course in freshwater fish parasites. You can see most of it in our Private Waters Pond Management Guide Series, in the chapter on Fish Parasites and Diseases.
Let me “copy and paste” much of that here:
Let me point out that you can always catch & release. Then you do not have to worry about what might be in or on the fish!