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As humans, we like to think we run the show here on planet Earth. But in the grand scheme of things, our legacy is laughably short compared to those of other species. The prehistoric looking Atractosteus spatula, for example, otherwise known as the alligator gar, is sometimes referred to as a "living fossil." And for good reason: Scientists can trace this unique looking fish back 100 million years.
Alligator Gar Have No Relation to Alligators
The alligator gar is a bit different, though — its signature facial structure includes a short, wide, shovel-shaped bill that makes it stand out amongst its fellow gar (and explains the reptilian name). Like other types of gar, these guys can be pretty big, weighing up to 350 pounds (159 kilograms) and measuring more than 10 feet (3 meters) in length. Average-sized adults come in at a more moderate 100 to 160 pounds (45 to 73 kilograms) and 4 to 6 feet (1.2 to 2 meters) in length.
The alligator gar's distinctive dark olive-brown skin is one of the features that has historically made the animal a hot commodity for humans. The thick, overlapping scales (known as ganoid scales) have been used to make jewelry and tools, as well as a whole host of leather products, and the skin oil has been used as an insect repellent.
originally posted by: incoserv
a reply to: AnakinWayneII
Man, you people way behind us! In South Louisiana we grind up the meat, make gar fish balls, cook 'em down in a brown gravy.
Damn, dey some kind of good, chère!
Here's a recipe with the brown gravy.
This recipe has more of a creole twist.
Or, if you like, you can just make the balls (or even patties) and fry them up.
Works with choupique, too.
...If anyone decides to go fishing for them. Because of their narrow mouth they’re hard to hook. The best method we’ve found is wrapping your bait up in four or five layers pantyhose. It gets tangled up in their needle like teeth, if they don’t flat out swallow it.