Whirligig fish - [fearsome critter] - (Latin: Piscis gyrinicus Porcinus)
•About this critter: Once a common river fish, caught & eaten in the wintertime near lumber camps, They had an propeller like fins which caused the poor thing to mainly swim in circles... A gluttonous relative to the Giddyfish, though much larger not nearly as elastic (and as such, much easier to cook.) Ice-fishermen would smear ham, cheese or bacon grease around the rim of a hole in the ice, the fish would lick the hole and start spinning so fast that it created a whirlpool & launching itself out of the water!
• History: Another funny fish, most popularly known for its inclusion in Paul Bunyans Natural History  - it has since re-appeared in many gag fishing books & several monster encyclopedias since - (usually mentioned as an after thought to the Giddyfish to save on space.) - The now 'typical" entry goes as follows:
"WHIRLIGIG FISH. Related to the Giddy Fish. They always swam in circles. They were taken in the winter months through holes in the ice, like their relatives. The loggers smeared the edges of the holes with ham or bacon rind. Smelling this the fish would swim around the rims of the holes, faster and faster, until they whirled themselves out on the ice. Thousands were thus taken."
--However, The absolute earliest written mention of the 'whirligig-fish' can be traced back to J. E. Rockwell's “Some Lumberjack Myths.” originally from the "Outers book" it was republished in various newpapers [1910 onwards] - below is the snippet describing the fish:
"The commonest fish was the "whirligig" fish. The jacks on Sunday and holidays, spent all their spare time catching the whirligig fish. They would bore a small hole In the ice of the river and bait It with cheese, smearing the cheese around the edge of the hole. The fish It seems, had a ravenous appetite for cheese, and could smell it for miles. They would come, to the hole, and then one of them would begin its whirling motion under the hole. Presently it would shoot up through the hole. and holding Itself up by Its back fins, placed near the tail, would begin eating the cheese.
The fish had a queer mouth, shaped like a sucker's mouth, and would suck up the bits of cheese. It would soon begin to swell, for the fish apparently could not control their appetites for cheese, and presently it would pop out of the ice like a seed squeezed from between the thumb and first finger. It was then an easy matter to catch it on the ice, and the hole was re baited. The whirligig fish was very fine eating..."
I suppose over time the yarn might've changed from gorging itself on cheese & instead changed to bacon because at some point someone must've realized that fish cannot digest lactose (either that or its a fish with a regional diet?) -
- [in 1979's mythical creatures of the USA and Canada Walker D Wyman classified it giving it a latin name and also classified the whirligig fish as an "authenticated fish" but for whatever reason decided to combine its description with most the other fish of paul bunyans natural history. - see also "goofang" ]
Closest thing to the real world equivalent? - Well i suppose that perch at least seems to be a popular fish to try & catch using bacon. They certainly don't have a sucker-like mouth or stand on their fins though.
When i first said i was gonna draw this one., my younger sibling squinted at me and said "This... isn't this just the CircleDuck again...?" and Yes it certainly shares similar traits, but I still have yet to draw the even more similar: "Pinnacle Grouse." when i draw that one the spiral will truly be complete.
Art Sticker by @samkalensky part of my fearsome critters collection of stickers check my shop and follow for many more