How to practice catch and release in fishing

With the global fish population threatened by over fishing, the necessity of letting the bycatch go back to the water is utmost. When you have caught a protected species or you have caught a fish that you do not need, you need to let it return to the water. However, you should make sure that you have not injured the fish to an extent that its rate of survival in the water diminishes. Fishes are delicate creatures of the water and they should be given that delicate care that is deserving of any living organism. Presented here are the key points to remember when letting the fishes return to the sea/lake/stream.

•    Don’t keep it out of the water for long: Just as you cannot breathe in water, the fishes cannot breathe out of water. The longer you are keeping the fish out of water, the more you are decreasing its chances of survival. It would be best if the fish is released when it is still in the water. If that is not possible then unhook or un-net the fish as fast as you can and gently release it in the water (do not throw). Your fishing activity should be planned accordingly so that you can release the fish in the water as soon as you can.

•    Quickly unhook or un-net: If you are using hooks, unhook the fish quickly. Also, take care while unhooking the fish. It is important to keep handy a pair of forceps or long nosed pliers to help you remove the hook quickly. If the hook is struck deeply in the throat or in the stomach of the fish, let go the hook. It will do more damage to remove the hook. Just cut the line and release the fish. You should not ever try to remove a hook through the gills. The gills are sensitive organs and touching them may damage them. It is recommended that you use a barbless hook to catch fish. When fishing in the sea, use circle hooks as these are much easier to remove. The use of double or treble hooks is strictly not recommended. When you are using nets, use a landing net with a soft wide mesh. Rough mesh removes scales and slimes from the fish which are its natural protection against parasites and infection.

•    Know how to hold a fish: When holding the fish, the first rule is to use a wet gloves or wet hands. Also you should try to keep the fish on a wet towel while removing the hook. Gently covering the eyes of the fish often helps it to stay calm. Do not touch the gills, and do not hold a fish by its stomach as that will damage the delicate internal organs of the creature. If you have to hold the fish, then hold it under the gill latch by one hand and use the other hand to hold the fish just in front of the tail. 

•    Don’t throw: You should not throw the fish back into the water as it dramatically reduces its chances of survival. The best method is to gently cradle the fish in the water.

•    Avoid photo session: If you have to take photos, then take it while the fish is still in the water. Your photo session is actually killing the fish and is an absolute waste of time.

These golden rules of catching and releasing fish back into the water should be followed by every individual angler. Also big fishing boats where a large amount of bycatch is generated, these methods should be practiced. The individual effort of every angler is important to maintain biodiversity. The ocean has enough for everyone’s need, but not for everyone’s greed.

Author Bio:

Christina Maria love to write on fishing related topics Tuna Fishing Miami, Tarpon fishing Miami, Miami charter boat & click here to know  about  Sailing Charters Miami