bran_dj

Learning to Catch & Release the right way

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This is an interesting discussion (starts around 16:50 in the video) about learning how to Catch & Release striped bass the right way so that we don't harm the fish any more than necessary once we've hooked up. Any one have any other tips or tricks about what you do to catch and release successfully? 

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Limit handling, be  camera ready for a quick pic with a size reference, if measured have you measure ready. Try to have barbless hooks and even limit use of treble hooks. Don’t lift them and stress them as little as possible 15 sec is food make them swim from your hand.

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Catch it in a sporting manner, then apply the Golden Rule. Release it like you would want to be freed if you were hooked and suffocating.

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If you’re fishing from rocks, have korkers and the wherewithal to meet the fish at the water to land it. I’ve seen too many fish dragged halfway up the rocks then half hazardly handled. On a breachway with outgoing flow, obviously it’s more difficult and hazardous for the angler, but the main point is to have a plan to land a fish before you even cast.

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17 hours ago, pakalolo said:

don't dick around taking pictures for starters

Amen.

 

To the extent possible, don't even take the fish out of the water.  Just slip the hook out and, depending on the amount of reviving necessary, let the fish go on its way.

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18 hours ago, pakalolo said:

don't dick around taking pictures for starters

That’s just silly....C&R is what I love to do and I’m very good at it I believe. You’d be amazed how fish I get the fish in the water. When you do enough times it becomes a routine. I crush my barbs for an easier release and my safety and I don’t take a pic of every catch, just the memorable one. 

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2 hours ago, Deep Hole said:

Good information from all. 

Absolutely. Thanks everyone. Keep the tips coming.

 

As for myself, I crush barbs and often use a bucktail so releasing is easy. But I do often drag the fish to the beach to get to it. Often I’m fishing in boots, not waders. I may change that next season and stay in the water so I can keep fish in there too. 

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  • Use lures instead of bait
  • Use single hook vs trebles (jigs and bucktails are king)
  • Land fish fast using heavy drags and stout gear
  • Keep fish in the water when landed
  • Don't weigh fish with a boga grip
  • Limit exposure out of water
  • Ensure fish has water over gills before letting go

The biggest thing people can do is just get in the water. Wear a wetsuit or waders and you will dramatically lessen the distance the fish has to go, the chance of a fish grinding on sand/smacking rocks, and release is a lot easier in the water. To Shane's point, go to the Canal and you will see plenty of knuckleheads come unprepared, drag fish up on the rocks, and then launch them 20ft into the water (if they even release the fish to begin with).

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I’m still surprised by the amount of people that will hold up a nice fish vertically with a hand or boga  grip. Might as well hit it with a fish bat while you’re at.

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