Lifting wild fish

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Clarki, Jan 4, 2013.

  1. Sean Beauchamp

    Sean Beauchamp Heavies...

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    If we are talking about steelhead, which we should be, the issue in my mind is about respect. The law is dumb. We are the only state/country to have it. Is it necessary? Does it save lives? No. Anadromous fishes are amazingly tough. Holding a strong, physically fit, ocean tough animal out of water isn't gonna factor into the equation (unless it starts getting extreme of course).

    Comparing it to holding an angler under water after sprinting a mile isn't a fair comparison because the average angler I see on the river couldn't sprint to the corner store without puking up their breakfast burrito. Steelhead are at the height of their fitness when they enter the river. They have been training for this day their entire lives, their spawning journey is the Super Bowl of their existence.

    This is where, in regards to steelhead and other wonderful wild anadromous critters of the PNW rivers, respect enters the equation for me personally. Photography is awesome! Steelhead take my breath away. The gods created something truly amazing when they waived their wand (or trident?) and *poofed* the first steelhead into our waters. I love looking at them, and I love taking their picture. However, as a steelheader, I think you should always be mindful of their journey and try to minimize your impact. Hold that fish and think about how far its come, how everything in its life has tried to stop it. Think about what a miracle it is, that in all the chaos of chance that one wild fish found your fly/lure/bait/bead, ate it and brought you that connection you traveled so far for. Respect that steelhead. It's life is literally in your hands. By all means take pictures but remember what you're holding.

    Steelheaders are on a journey just like the fish they chase. Not everyone is on the same page you have to put in your miles to understand. I'm a guppy out there that's for sure. But the more steelhead I see and the more miles I put on my boots the more I respect them and handling them and appreciating them doesn't always mean a good picture is taken and sometimes mean I lose them before it gets there... My favorite shots, the ones I drool over, are a simple head shot. The chrome blush of the fish with my fly in its lip. Hero pose is wack to me. But I remember when I loved em!
     
  2. Daryle Holmstrom

    Daryle Holmstrom retiredfishak

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    Sounds like a lot of PETA members here
     
  3. hydrological

    hydrological beads are NOT flies and snagging is just ghetto

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    i dont think anyone here, myself included, thinks 2 or 3 seconds out of the water for a quick picture is the problem. done carefully, keeping the fish low over the warter, you arent taking much of an unneccessary risk when you feel the need for a photo. and, yes some of those photos, done right, contribute to the greater good, and increase the risk only fractionally. but why take any UNNECCESSARY risks? if this still makes no sense to you, let me put it another way.....
    every time i drive my car thru your neighborhood, i take a chance. no matter how slow i drive, or how carefully, theres a chance your kid will dart out from between parked cars. so, since there is that chance anyway, why shouldnt i just go ahead and drive faster, i mean there is still just a slightly higher chance anyway, right? but why take that chance when theres no good reason to? i'm not going to speed up, but i'm not going to stop driving altogether, and you arent going to lock your kids inside the house, right? are you going to lobby the city to ban cars, yours included, from every residential neighborhood in town? that would be the equivilent of not allowing fishing at all, right? and, if i really belonged to peta, i wouldnt drive my car at all. my opinion, is laws, like sparkys, are usually aimed at the lowest common denominator. 55 mph, is not aimed at the most careful, alert drivers either. is this starting to make sense yet? i cant speak for anyone else, but my point is, do you NEED to hold a fish up over the bank, or the boat for even half a minute for a photo? so,why take unneccessary chances ?
     
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  4. skokomish fly

    skokomish fly New Member

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    That made little sense to me. Holding a fish out of the water for a few seconds does not equal speeding through a residential area putting kids at risk. yes I get the analogy but I don't think it is a good one. If everyone is so concerened about fish being held out of the water for a pic maybe they should concentrate their efforts on things a little more deleterious such as commercial fishing and habitat degradation.
     
  5. Eyejuggler

    Eyejuggler Beech Nut

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    Forgot what forum I was in.
     
  6. Sean Beauchamp

    Sean Beauchamp Heavies...

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    What kind of effort does it take to have the law?? I steelhead fish 12 months out of the year in every corner of the state and have never seen enforcement hiding in the bushes waiting to write tickets.
     
  7. skokomish fly

    skokomish fly New Member

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    I agree Sean it does take little effort to have the law. But I think that is the states problem they put little effort into a lot of things and a lot of effort into poorly researched efforts that are a waste of money and time. I think if they put a little more effort into certain things it would help the fisheries. Say for instance if handling fish prior to release is a problem why not educate the angling community on the proper technique on landing, reviving and releasing a fish instead of just taking our money and making dumb laws or shutting
    fisheries down which require no money or effort. Especially when there decisions are made on little or poor scientific data.
     
  8. ak_powder_monkey

    ak_powder_monkey Proud to Be Alaskan

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    The ultra pressured steelhead streams in AK do not allow you to remove fish from the water, also most places in Alaska don't allow you to remove a king from the water unless you are keeping it. Again, lifting the fish isn't the problem, its the dragging it up on the rocks then kicking it back in the river that is, or letting it flop around in the bottom of a drift boat or something.
     
  9. Josh P

    Josh P Active Member

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    I've read studies that show catch and release survival rates of coho are damn near 0%. Recently also came a crossed a study that covers removing fish from water in stressed conditions. I'll see if I can find it at work Monday and throw it up. That law is good though. I live in California now and you can remove wild fish from the water. Keeps idiots like this guy from killing fish. Ran into this photo on Instagram the other day and almost popped a gasket.
     

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  10. Josh P

    Josh P Active Member

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    I used to live/work on the anchor river and would see this everyday day.
     
  11. Josh P

    Josh P Active Member

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    And if any of you use Instagram find this idiot and tell him what you think. I already started a war with him.
     
  12. ak_powder_monkey

    ak_powder_monkey Proud to Be Alaskan

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    Yup the only place I've been where there was a lot of "god damnit another fucking steelhead!!" As a treble hook is ripped out of the poor fish.
     
  13. underachiever

    underachiever !

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    I like to release my steelhead like this! Swam away so it must be alright.
     
  14. Chris Bellows

    Chris Bellows Your Preferred WFF Poster

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    do you really think the angling community would be all kumbaya if the handling rule wasn't in effect?

    i think that is pie in the sky dreaming. where do we draw the lines when it comes to which restrictions are "good" and which ones are "bad"? are selective fishing, catch and release areas a "good" restriction?

    as i've said before, the angling community is fragmented for very good reasons. there are serious differences between segments of the angling community (not just gear related) when it comes to bait, catch and release, escapement goals, hatchery fish, and numerous other issues. these issues will not go away and i don't think those who feel strongly about them should be quiet for the sake of "unity".

    as for the handling rule, this thread makes me want to dislike it :) but i think it serves a purpose. we can argue about what the increase in survival for fish held out of the water is, but the majority of people will admit it is an increase. in some rivers, catch record data is starting to show how many fish of the total run size are being caught and released. it can be a high number (over 75%) and i think we should be aware of our impact and while i trust many posting here to do a quick lift, picture, and release i cannot say that about all anglers, or even a majority. watch any fishing show and you will see fish being held out of the water for too long over and over and over and over........ the internet only adds to the number of people taking photos with the instant ability to show off catches, and there will be plenty of people taking far too long to take pictures. it happens in places outside washington so there is no reason to think it wouldn't happen here. people can still get great shots of fish under the current rule.

    the only downside of the rule is that internet threads devolve over pictures posted, especially in fisheries where the handling law is not in effect.

    is it really that burdensome that you cannot lift a fish fully out of the water for a picture? are there more important rule changes than this one? of course, but the same could be said for almost any regulation while habitat is destroyed and gillnets fish. this rule is a simple way to decrease mortality in pressured fisheries and has little to no impact on anglers.
     
  15. shawn k

    shawn k Member

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    Every year there are several of these threads on this board where somebody finds pictures on Cl or somewhere on the Web where some dipshit local Forks guide that has no clientele posts some fish pictures where he or his clients is holding a fish out of the water. Several people that couldn't find tits in a titty bar come on here and lecture everybody how it is illegal to hold the fish out of the water and how dare they do it. But nothing ever changes.

    If you guys spent a fraction of the time writing comments on proposed regulations , attending fish and wildlife commission meetings etc. you would get more accomplished than preaching to the choir on a fly fishing board.

    There is presently 10 weeks out of the year where it is legal to kill a wild steelhead on several rivers on the OP what are you doing to stop that?

    For the record I don't even get out of the water to land the fish I catch and I never touch them.
     
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