When the siluro did non exist

Gentile concessione dell'ANTICA TRATTORIA

di Ardola (ZIBELLO)

Gentile concessione
del ristorante
di Polesine Parmense

Gentile concessione della
località Ongina
Polesime Parmense

Polesine Parmense. There are a few towns named that way but there is only one that is situated on the Po riverside which is equidistant from Parma, Cremona and Piacenza. You are almost in the city in other words. You can take advantage of metropolitan benefits but escape chaos, smog and parking problems savouring instead clean air, green, peace. Isn’t it fantastic? Yes. Surely that “being almost in the city” can be a nuisance for those people who do not have a license but…we are not here to talk about mobility problems, are we?

Let’s talk about fishing. Let’s talk about a sport or an income activity pursued by the majority of the habitants of Polesine up to a few years ago. Let’s talk about the deep knowledge of this ichthyic discipline of my fellow villagers, or of the love and respect that they have for their river and … why not? Let’s talk about the ancestors of our friend silurus with a considerable size.

Before the silurus glanis took up residence and procreated in Italian rivers and ponds there was in fact another giant of choice meats that would happily roam in our water streams. A coveted prey: the Sturgeon.

There are many agreeable anecdotes, episodes increased in difficulty of venture and size of prey each time they where told. Luckily there are a few photographic evidences which I have collected from relatives, friends and restaurant walls that I am going to show you here.

From old fisherman’s stories it looks like the sturgeon has really been a giant in the big river.
The biggest one caught during the past century was on the verge of two quintals.
The pictures show specimens captured around Polesine and go over 100 kgs.