Animal Planet to air series about eel fishermen

Cold River Cash (pictured) follows three teams of fishermen in Maine who spend two months out of the year braving the elements in order to catch elver eels, which can fetch as much as US$2,000 per pound.
December 10, 2013

An unscripted series about eel fishers in Maine is to begin airing on Animal Planet in the New Year.

Produced by Left/Right, the eight-episode Cold River Cash (pictured) follows three teams of fisherman during the state’s two-month eel fishing season as they attempt to catch the thread-like baby glass eels, also known as elver eels.

Maine is one of two states in the U.S. in which eel fishing is legal, and dealers pay as much as US$2,000 per pound for the tiny creatures. The fishing season begins in March and lasts 60 days.

The cast includes brothers Dana and Chris Hole who, along with their best friend Ken Cornelison, brought in $600,000 by the end of the last eel-fishing season; Chad Jordan, his brother Justin, son C.J. and friend Lester Toothaker; and father-and-son team Lee and Jason Leavitt and Mike Bradley, Jason’s brother-in-law.

The network originally commissioned the show last year under the title Eel of Fortune.

Ken Druckerman, Banks Tarver, Anneka Jones and Geno McDermott serve as executive producers for Left/Right. Keith Hoffman is the executive producing for Animal Planet.

Cold River Cash premieres on January 2 at 10 p.m. EST/PST.

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Daniele Alcinii is a news editor at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joined the RS team in 2015 with experience in journalism following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and with communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.