Over the last few weeks I have been able to sit down and watch a few of the shows on the History Channel. One that caught my interest was Mississippi Men. I had no idea if the show was about those in the state of Mississippi or those that worked on the Mississippi River. I have experiences and connections with both so I decided to tune in to this particular History Channel TV show. One of the first “characters” that caught my attention was Gary Champagne III.
Gary Champagne III and Eddie Frashier are fisherman from the Louisiana area. In the episode I watched they were trying to catch as many frogs as possible. The show explained that the two could earn as much as $5 a frog. Most of the frogs are used to serve as food for items such as fried frog legs. I have never had fried frog legs but it does not surprise me that this is a delicacy in the state of Louisiana and other southern states.
It would not surprise me if many southern “folk” would describe the taste of frog to chicken. That seems to be what everything tastes, like, right? If you have dined on frog legs or any type of frog meat please leave a comment to let us know what frog tastes like.
After the two frog fisherman sold a significant amount to a restaurant owner the owner told them he needed 1000 pounds of catfish in a week. With catfish being worth $4 a pound this would be a huge payday – $4000 for one week. If we could all replicate that we would be a much happier country, don’t you think? The concern for Eddie Frashier was the ability to catch 1000 pounds of catfish in a single week. That truly is a lot of catfish.
Gary and Eddie dropped four or five nets in an attempt to catch as many catfish as possible. They explained that catfish like to swim against the current so it is important to strategically place the nets. If the nets are placed in the wrong part of the river or swamp, fisherman might walk away with nothing at all. Having grown up on a freshwater river I can tell you that rainbow, brown and brook trout also like to swim against or into the current. I am not certain why this is the case but they do it all the time.
If you are looking to catch any type of freshwater fish remember they like to swim against the current. They also like to hang out behind rocks where they can feed on the nymphs and other bugs that are floating along the bottom of the river. When placing nets in the river it is always important to have the right type of bait. It is not that difficult to catch catfish. They will eat almost anything that smells good. I would suggest hot dogs or any type of meat. They will eat it alive.
Unfortunately, for Gary Champagne III and Eddie Frashier they do not have time to sit and catch one catfish at a time. There is no way they will be able to get 1000 pounds if they are using a fishing pole and hook. After dropping the nets they waited patiently and went back to check on their catch. There were no fish in any of the nets. When they approached the final net they noticed another individual that was looking in the net. It was obvious this particular individual was stealing all of their catfish.
They had a confrontation with the individual who ended up pulling a 9 mm, or something similar, handgun. This is where the show left off as Gary ended up driving his boat into the poacher’s boat. Of course the History Channel TV Show left it at the climax as they want us to tune in next week. I will try to keep updating this post as we learn more about Gary and Eddie and their adventures making money on the Mississippi River.
If you know them or have any experience doing this type of work please feel free to comment below. We would love to know much more about this particular lifestyle. Also, do you know anything about these two men? Have they been arrested? Do they have a checkered past? Have they been in other confrontations with fisherman on the Mississippi River?
1500 Pounds of Catfish
During the February 11th, 2015 episode there was a focus on Gary and Eddie trying to catch 1500 pounds of catfish. There was a quick recap of last week in which a poacher was taking the catfish out of their nets. The guy pulled a gun but ended up simply driving his boat away. This week, Gary and Eddie find out that this particular guy with a goatee ended up stealing even more of their catfish.
When all was said and done, Gary and Eddie had to go out into the big river to catch the extra catfish they needed. One of the funniest parts of the show was Eddie falling in the river and losing his hat. Interestingly, he was able to keep his glasses. I am not sure how that happened.
When Gary and Eddie brought the 1500 pounds of catfish to Dusten Gainey they were informed he had already purchased the catfish from the same guy that stole their catfish. In the preview for next week’s show it looks like they get into a fight with this guy. There are also gun shots so I am wondering if Gary or Eddie get shot during the next episode. I guess we will just have to wait and see.