iwantmypie

Best Way to Harvest Fish

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I haven’t kept fish in ages but looking to start again, mostly Northeast saltwater species (fluke, scup, black sea bass, tog, etc).

 

General consensus seems to be nick the gills and let ‘em bleed out in a bucket of cold water immediately then immediately put on ice.

 

Any ill effects with not gutting a fish immediately? Safe to assume all is good if a fish is bled out and has to sit on ice for a few hours? Anyone, whether from boat or shore, gut their fish immediately?

 

I use to trout fish with my grandfather all the time when I was younger and he’d always have us dispatch and clean them on the spot on the river. I feel like doing so, say on a public beach, might rub people some the wrong way. Wasn’t sure if there’s any “etiquette” I should be aware of or not.

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Posted (edited)

Bleed it and put it in a cooler with a slush consisting of ice and sea water.  Do not put them on ice.  And screw rubbing people wrong.

Edited by Spigola

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Posted (edited)

I don't harvest fish, I catch them, Deer I killed. Harvest means there waiting around to be picked.lol  Here's what I do, Catching fish one after another, I put them on ice asap. Blues, I bleed out. Now given time between catching fish, I'll gut them and put back on ice. I think and was told that this will keep the fish tasty.  Who cares what they feel. I clean fish right on the beach or pier.Tight lines.

Edited by hunter123

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3 mins ago, Spigola said:

Bleed it and put it in a cooler with a slush consisting of ice and sea water.  Do not put them on ice.  And screw rubbing people wrong.

Your right, after awhile there is always ice slush.

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I bleed everything as soon as I catch and throw in the cooler. I fillet at home. 

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3 hours ago, hunter123 said:

Your right, after awhile there is always ice slush.

Add salt water to the cooler in the morning.  Fish on ice will turn to mush.

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I only keep fish when I ice fish, save for the rare occasion I get hungry for crappie. On the ice I will drill a hole and just barely nick through the bottom of the ice so the hole fills with water, but nothing gets in or out. I throw all the fish in the hole and when I am done I bleed them and by the time I'm packed up they are all bled out. Gather some slush/ice shavings from the holes and put it in a cooler/bag, put the fish in the cooler/bag, and bring home to clean and cook. You get free ice for the cooler and it never melts. The fish stays cool and fresh (or freezes) because it's normally at or below freezing. I find it a little easier to keep fish through the ice.

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Some fish species spoil or change in taste faster than others.  Trout is among the fast spoiling ones.  I think cooling the fish as soon as you can is more important than gutting, assuming you are going to clean it the same day.  If I keep the fish I stick the knife into the brain.  As to bleeding - I only bled bluefish.

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9 hours ago, Spigola said:

  And screw rubbing people wrong.

For the most part, I agree; however there was this one time.......  They used to plant trout in the local pond until liberals put a stop to it.  On Plant day I'd mini-jig and release two or three dozen but keep a couple for dinner before I left.  I was in the habit of conking them on the head with my multi-tool and then immediately gutting.  A little kid was watching and when I smacked the trout on the head, one of its eyes popped completely out of its head and freaked the kid out.  Luckily the eye did not hit him.

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OH SUGAR!!!! I've done it wrong for seventy five years.

Hope they don't toss me off site.

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