coastalfreak

Questioning The Ethically of Fishing

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Hey y’all, hope all of you are well during this pandemic. 
 

Fishing is something that has been part of my life for a long, long time. I gotta say though, the more I do it, the more I question the ethicality of it. When you get down to it, you are piercing a metal hook through a fishes jaw/lip and then holding them out

of the water where they can’t breathe. I read an article in Field and Stream where the author said to hold your breath when you have a fish outta water. That gives you a good idea of what the fish is feeling. That didn’t make me feel too good.

 

Today I was out fishing in a creek and I gut hooked a bluegill. Tried to get the hook out but he went belly up on me and few minutes after release. I know, not trying to be a softie but it made me feel bad.

 

Also, I recently went bass fishing and the bass got hooked right in the corner of the mouth. Great hookset, but the hook was really stuck and I was an idiot and forgot my pliers in the car. Probably spent a minute or two getting that hook out, and the fish seam off but pretty slow.

 

Needless to say, I’ve been questioning the sport as well as my personal skills with handling fish and such.
 

Does anybody else ever feel this way? Or am I alone and turning into a PETA person? 
 

Thanks,

Kevin

Edited by coastalfreak

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When you kill a fish so you can eat it, thus ending it's life, think about how many lives you saved of the fish that fish would have eaten over the rest of it's life.

 

One dead Tuna, Striper, Fluke or Sea Bass probably saves the lives of thousands of other little Sea Kittens.

 

Bait Fish Lives Matter, so every time you slitting the gills of a Tuna or Flounder, you should feel a sense of joy for how many of those poor little cuties you're really saving.

 

PS - Yeah, you are turning into little PETA Boy.

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Like it or not fishing is and always will be a blood sport, your driving a sharp piece of metal into a fishes mouth to haul it out of the water. You then either kill it and eat it which is completely natural or you try to revive and release it. Even if you go the C&R route regardless of how careful you are with handling and reviving some of those fish will die. That's just the fact. Either you accept it and move on or you don't.

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I have thought about this as well, more so from the veiw of using fish as live bait.

 

But, I remind myself that even what I use as bait gets used by whatever eats it once the bait is discarded thus continuing the circle of life.

 

Also, by fishing I make conservation of the fish I pursue a point of interest. I then make it a point to encourage conservation and selective harvest amoungst other anglers. I also send regular emails and such to the DNR, as well as encourage others to do the same, asking for better protection for certain species.

 

I wouldn't care if I didn't care about fishing.

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11 mins ago, coastalfreak said:

I read an article in Field and Stream where the author said to hold your breath when you have a fish outta water. That gives you a good idea of what the fish is feeling. That didn’t make me feel too good.

Last year I was catching black sea bass on a party boat in RI with a friend. Atypically, I wasn't killing them as I went. After fishing, we drove to his house in Lowell to divide up the fish, having brought only one cooler. A couple of them were alive. Fish aren't mammals. They don't have lungs. They lack the brain structures mammals use to interpret pain. I'm not sure what they experience, but it's not useful to anthropomorphize them. I try to minimize overt mayhem to stay on the safe side.

 

If they're hooked badly, cut the line. The handling of the fish and maneuvering the hook is more dangerous than leaving it in.

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20 mins ago, coastalfreak said:

Hey y’all, hope all of you are well during this pandemic. 
 

Fishing is something that has been part of my life for a long, long time. I gotta say though, the more I do it, the more I question the ethicality of it. When you get down to it, you are piercing a metal hook through a fishes jaw/lip and then holding them out

of the water where they can’t breathe. I read an article in Field and Stream where the author said to hold your breath when you have a fish outta water. That gives you a good idea of what the fish is feeling. That didn’t make me feel too good.

 

Today I was out fishing in a creek and I gut hooked a bluegill. Tried to get the hook out but he went belly up on me and few minutes after release. I know, not trying to be a softie but it made me feel bad.

 

Also, I recently went bass fishing and the bass got hooked right in the corner of the mouth. Great hookset, but the hook was really stuck and I was an idiot and forgot my pliers in the car. Probably spent a minute or two getting that hook out, and the fish seam off but pretty slow.

 

Needless to say, I’ve been questioning the sport as well as my personal skills with handling fish and such.
 

Does anybody else ever feel this way? Or am I alone and turning into a PETA person? 
 

Thanks,

Kevin

PETA person...sorry but sounds like u need a new hobby bub

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When C&R fishing I try to minimize stress on the fish. Barbs are pinched on the hooks to make unhooking easier. If I can I don't remove the fish from the water while unhooking. And various things like that....Yes there are times that things don't go according to plan, but more often than not they go well. I spend a lot of time fishing for Brook Trout in the mountains here and will catch the same fish multiple times over the course of the year, so I assume that what I'm doing is working....

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You can think of it like, the fish is trying to kill another fish so you are saving that fishes life.  You are not making them eat, they choose to eat, sometimes you eat and sometimes you are eaten.

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Pinch your barbs down. I jig for bluegills and use the trout magnet barbless hooks or I just pinch down the eagle claw jig barbs. It makes life so much easier. I would never throw a lure or jig for stripers with the barb not pinched. Even with the barbs crushed, bluefish still seem to get every treble stuck in their mouth and stapling it shut. 

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Today I was out fishing in a creek and I gut hooked a bluegill. Switch to flies or single hook lures.

    went bass fishing and the bass got hooked right in the corner of the mouth. Great hookset, but the hook was really stuck and I was an idiot and forgot my pliers in the car. Probably spent a minute or two getting that hook out,  Crush your barbs or buy barbless.

   holding them out of the water where they can’t breathe

Net em & leave em in the water to release em.

You should have kept & ate the bluegill .

You kill more wildlife clearing land to live on then hunting or fishing.

So if PETA wants to help wildlife they should kill themselves!

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5 mins ago, SB59 said:

So if PETA wants to help wildlife they should kill themselves!

It’s all propaganda. I don’t mind people sticking up for abused puppies -but fish are food. And I think most experienced anglers know the safest way to handle fish they are releasing. 


As for fish experiencing pain... I’ve seen a video somewhere of the same fluke re-biting the jig as he’s being released. I think even if they felt pain, eating sharp crabs and spiky little baitfish is part of feeding for them. I don’t think it bothers them as much as we think. 

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13 mins ago, SB59 said:

Today I was out fishing in a creek and I gut hooked a bluegill. Switch to flies or single hook lures.

    went bass fishing and the bass got hooked right in the corner of the mouth. Great hookset, but the hook was really stuck and I was an idiot and forgot my pliers in the car. Probably spent a minute or two getting that hook out,  Crush your barbs or buy barbless.

   holding them out of the water where they can’t breathe

Net em & leave em in the water to release em.

You should have kept & ate the bluegill .

You kill more wildlife clearing land to live on then hunting or fishing.

So if PETA wants to help wildlife they should kill themselves!

I absolutely would have ate the bluegill. Just didn't have ice on me. 

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Wow lots of responses.  I hate it.  I feel like a murderer.  I think I know this...  fish don’t feel pain like we do.  I remember watching vids of Great whites being tagged.  Drilling holes into the flesh did not seem to bother the fish. Try that with your family dog...  but I still feel bad.  I cant even live line baits because I feel like their lives still matter.  I think they get stressed but pain?  I don’t think that they feel it the same way as mammals.   Gosh I still have been really toying with this too.  

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