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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
In some of our discussions about fly fishing for tuna there has been some discussion about the practice of cnr with these fish and whether or not the fish could handle it.

Anyway, I came across this video today and thought it was pretty interesting. Not trying to make any definitive conclusions one way or another here, just thought this video was interesting and thought maybe some others would too.

 

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In some of our discussions about fly fishing for tuna there has been some discussion about the practice of cnr with these fish and whether or not the fish could handle it.

Anyway, I came across this video today and thought it was pretty interesting. Not trying to make any definitely conclusions one way or another here, just thought this video was interesting and thought maybe some others would too.

You beat me to posting that! :)

My take away was 7 out of 22 tags were a dead fish or no response (I'd guess tag sank with dead fish or was damaged by predators) so about 30% of fish did not survive..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yeah I suppose one of the problems with this sort of study is there is little way to determine what the actual cause of death is for any fish that is released and eventually dies. The one fish he mentioned that he thought it was most likely eaten by a shark based on a spike in temperature in the tag that made him believe it was inside the stomach of a shark. Of course he then mentions wondering if the act of catching and releasing a fish could have consequences that result in it being easier prey for a predator. Who knows.

Interesting stuff, and cool to see someone studying this even if it's not a huge sample size and some of the results
 

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Yeah I suppose one of the problems with this sort of study is there is little way to determine what the actual cause of death is for any fish that is released and eventually dies. The one fish he mentioned that he thought it was most likely eaten by a shark based on a spike in temperature in the tag that made him believe it was inside the stomach of a shark. Of course he then mentions wondering if the act of catching and releasing a fish could have consequences that result in it being easier prey for a predator. Who knows.

Interesting stuff, and cool to see someone studying this even if it's not a huge sample size and some of the results
Why could the fish not have been eaten by a bigger BFT? They're warm blooded too!

I'm fine with death in first 2 days attributed to catch and release and anything else considered normal. If the fish that was eaten after 3 weeks needs an interaction with humans cause of death I would blame that on the fact it had a tag to carry (extra drag, infection?) which is NOT the fault on CNR but just part of doing science..

I did not like to see lip gaffing suggested as good CNR practice: perhaps necessary for tagging tho. Dehooker or even better light wire barbless hooks that bend out is the way to go IMHO!
 

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Can't view the video on my work computer either (fun filters) but CnR with albacore would be a nice option if the mortality was low enough.

For me kill/no-kill depends on the type of trip. There is a definite meat aspect to this fishery but I'd prefer stocking my pantry on a live bait trip. On a fly trip, I'd rather focus on enjoying the fishing and not have to deal with processing a ton of fish on board and filleting back in port. IF we can CnR with some confidence of survival, it would be nice to set a mutually agreed boat limit based on how much everyone is looking to take home. Not that that was a problem last year.

And yes, I think a de-hooking tool would be best so the fish never left the water.
 

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Those 7 tags failed to transmit data. That does not mean the tuna died after release.

You beat me to posting that! :)

My take away was 7 out of 22 tags were a dead fish or no response (I'd guess tag sank with dead fish or was damaged by predators) so about 30% of fish did not survive..
 

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Those 7 tags failed to transmit data. That does not mean the tuna died after release.
No it doesn't. I think it was 6 that did not transmit. But the alternative to death on release is the program spent all that time and money on satellite tagging and the tags are only 70% reliable. That seems like a pretty stupid scientifuc method. :) (spelling error left for dramatic effect)
 

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No it doesn't. I think it was 6 that did not transmit. But the alternative to death on release is the program spent all that time and money on satellite tagging and the tags are only 70% reliable. That seems like a pretty stupid scientifuc method. :) (spelling error left for dramatic effect)
If you can come up with a better way, then I am sure people would like to know!

Having not read the study, I don't know exactly the capabilities of the tags they used, but they likely had a built in pressure release so that the tag would pop up if the fish died and sank straight away, as well as a timed release for tracking.

The main problems with non response from PSAT tags seem to be that they get stuff growing on them that stops them from floating and transmitting data to the satellite. Or they get eaten. In this case they probably had a short tracking duration to get by the first problem so maybe all those other tags were munched!

What I did notice in the video was a lack of sterile technique when they attached the tags. They made a big hole in those fish!
 

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I have released small tuna, but if they get torn up, bleeding they will get eaten pretty quickly. I don't release larger tuna, we are trying to catch those. I have released mahi, mostly in baja when we get 30 plus a day. I will keep one for dinner. Here in Hawaii we keep all the mahi over 10lbs. Pelagics get pretty beat up when you catch them. We release most marlin, unless the captain wants to keep it. If it was up to me I would release them all. They do get eaten by big sharks after a long battle. I think if they wanted to study bluefin, they should realize that a majority will get eaten by predators. It is a rough world out there. That fishery has been pretty decimated. You can tell the guys are having fun getting them on light tackle, which tires out the fish more. That size fish is protected and it is a very regulated fishery. Mems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
It's my opinion that the wild west days of unregulated albacore fishing are soon coming to an end. I personally feel stronger regulations are coming down the pipe, including fish limits. I also believe that the northern Pacific albacore fishery is not as robust and never ending as many seem to think. I recall reading this summer about the fish being labeled... near threatened? I believe.

Although the sport catch is but a small fraction of the overall take, I think it's probably a good idea to look at ways to lesson our impact. Cnr could certainly be one way, if it is proven to be effective. That's ultimately why this video caught my eye.

I also personally strongly believe that the meat hunting aspect needs to be addressed. I have a cupboard full of canned tuna so I'm certainly not preaching here. Hell most know what I'm currently doing for a living so I'm the last one to point fingers. Just think it's worth discussing. It always surprises me how much emphasis is put on the take home yield by a good number of anglers. I think the perception of albacore fishing up here is so focused on wide open bites and plugged boats that its created a situation where anything less is considered failure.

I've said it a few times but how many fisheries do you know of where you can go out into the Pacific ocean, hook 20 hard fighting, 20 plus pound fish, and get back to the dock and report a fairly slow day. But with this fishery that is the case. So many are focused on how much meat they will get, and using that as the justification for the cost of the entire trip. While I certainly understand the reasoning I've never grasped why this doesn't apply to other fisheries.... i.e. How much does it cost to do a day of tarpon fishing? Permit? Marlin? How much meat is brought home on those trips?
How much does a quality OP guide charge for a day of swinging for steel in March? Again, how much meat is brought home here?

Just some thoughts. I personally feel that this fishery is viewed by many the same way the salmon fisheries were viewed by many back in the day.... never ending. Sadly that is not the case and it just seems to me that it would be wise to look at ways to stay ahead of any issues instead of doing the same thing we as a species have always done and just keep on with the status quo until its gone
 

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Thanks for posting that. It's encouraging news, but I'm not surprised. Sadly, CnR is not a common practice yet in WA for Albacore based on the cross-eyed looks I receive back at the dock when I mention the fish I released, and the many photos I've seen of fish stacked up the length of the dock. I really don't see much point in bonking every fish that comes over rail when tuna fishing is that good. I realize it's a big investment to participate in that fishery and the recreational haul is little more than a drop in the bucket, but it is growing and I fear the impact is going to become significant. An added bonus to CnR is it does make the boat clean up at end of the day much easier and you don't need to go buy a commercial grade vacuum sealer.
 
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