How to identify a Chain Pickerel
The sides which are yellowish to greenish (almost black when young) are overlaid with a reticulated, or chain-like, pattern of black lines. Also, the pickerels (including the redfin and grass pickerels), have fully scaled cheeks and gill covers. The northern pike usually has no scales on the bottom half of the gill cover, and the muskellunge, E. masquinongy, usually has no scales on the bottom half of either the gill cover or the cheek.
Where to catch Chain Pickerel
It inhabits the eastern United States and Canada, from Nova Scotia southward through all of the Atlantic coast states and most of Florida, and westward through Georgia, Alabama, and Louisiana to as far as the Navasota River in eastern Texas. From Louisiana, it extends northward in the Mississippi River drainage through eastern Arkansas to southeastern Missouri and southwestern Kentucky. The following list includes additional details on where to catch this fish: