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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Often I have been in a difficult situation using even a 7 weight fly rod and eight to ten lb leader ("tippet") when catching these magnificent fish.

The problem is precisely that they do have a tendency to fight to themselves to near death on some lakes.

The solution is of course to not release the fish immediately and rather revive it and watch it slowly start to recover before letting it go. Like all great sport fish.

Last year unfortunately I caught one that was very difficult to hang onto as gripping it at the tail even with a glove was difficult as it was too thick through the tail and fat as a horse in clover.

My intention was to release it as soon as I felt any sign that the fish could keep itself upright. Usually this is not a problem, but in this case the fish slipped after only a few signs of being able to right itself.

For those who have never released a bigger fish here is what will happen. If the fish is alive enough to have some instinctual control over the stress of being captured the fish will dive in an almost dead sink but up right. If this does not happen and it stays flopping on the surface then you should never just leave the fish because most likely it will not survive.

This is an instinctual response to avoid avian predation. If the water is deep enough.
So this is a really good thing, because a large rainbow most likely will not be subject to huge bottom feeder predation like the ocean caught fish related to rainbow "trout" are.

In the case of this fish it dove down to the bottom at about 18 feet of depth and flopped over on its side, which is not a good sign.

The advice here is to NOT LEAVE THE FISH QUITE YET if you can see it, rather wait for it to right itself and slowly swim away. Which is fortunately what happened to this magnificent rainbow.

If the fish does not revive quickly enough some times it will float/swim up to the surface and flop in death throws, which is a sure way for it to become avian or bear or even otter food.

However all is not necessarily lost. On some occasions if you get to the fish quickly enough and it is not in cardiac arrest when it comes to the surface you can still give the fish a back and forth breathing assist.

On occasion this has worked to revive fish when I and the other anglers I fish with have seen fish flopping on the surface because they have fought themselves almost to death and the angler just left them on the bottom and they popped up instead of regaining circulation.

Of course the other option in my opinion is to actually take the fish and eat it even if you are fishing on Dragon!

If this all seems a little extreme to some then please consider the fact that I am an ex-logging first aid attendant and know a thing or two about how to handle trauma emergencies in the wild. ;-)

Cheers
Eric
 

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Play and net the fish quickly. Don't let larger fish run with only a clicker to slow them - palm the reel instead.
It is much easier and faster to land a fish if there are two people in the boat.
Revive it in the net with wet hands. Absolutely no need to use a glove.
 

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Absolutely with typhoon on this one. I always net my fish, regardless their size. if there is any concern about the fish reviving, keep it in the ner=t (only handle it to keep it upright) and then gently tip the net to free the fish. If you are holding the fish (in the net or in your hands) let it breathe on it's own using its gills and gill plates to move water. Not only is there no need to "give the fish a back and forth breathing assist", it can actually cause damage to the gills themselves, they aren't designed to have water flowing over them in reverse. I didn't know that logging first aid attendants were trained in aquatic revival techniques. Neither of my sons, who instruct life guards (NLS and CPR), were ever given instruction in trout revival. Who knew!! :cheers::peace:


 

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I saw a fish swim down to the bottom and just lay on it's side once. I dangled my hemostats attached to my line down 15 feet, as soon as the hemostats touched the fish it fluttered and swam off.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Play and net the fish quickly. Don't let larger fish run with only a clicker to slow them - palm the reel instead.
It is much easier and faster to land a fish if there are two people in the boat.
Revive it in the net with wet hands. Absolutely no need to use a glove.
Yes of course I do use a net, just thought this was obvious LOL and I am talking about soft gloves not ocean fish grippers BARF! Sometimes my arthritis makes it so fishing with bare hands in a wind with sleet and rain where you usually catch the very best larger fish a little more bearable and comforting.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i saw a fish swim down to the bottom and just lay on it's side once. I dangled my hemostats attached to my line down 15 feet, as soon as the hemostats touched the fish it fluttered and swam off.
good tip and double thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Absolutely with typhoon on this one. I always net my fish, regardless their size. if there is any concern about the fish reviving, keep it in the ner=t (only handle it to keep it upright) and then gently tip the net to free the fish. If you are holding the fish (in the net or in your hands) let it breathe on it's own using its gills and gill plates to move water. Not only is there no need to "give the fish a back and forth breathing assist", it can actually cause damage to the gills themselves, they aren't designed to have water flowing over them in reverse. I didn't know that logging first aid attendants were trained in aquatic revival techniques. Neither of my sons, who instruct life guards (NLS and CPR), were ever given instruction in trout revival. Who knew!! :cheers::peace:


No arguments here only some here have jumped to conclusions about things as usual. Perhaps I should fish with a ten weight bone fish rod instead...LOL AND yes I do not overplay fish like some who catch 10 lb Cariboo rainbows on a three weight!!!!! And I certainly never pump the fish like a cpr operation, so my rescue rate is very respectable indeed!

The ones that do not recover wind up coming home. So there is a question of ethics here as well, all that said seldom do I choose to limit out anywhere in BC whether fishing salt, fresh, or polluted! BUT and again this is a big one, on a few occasions I have come to a lake or a stretch of salt chuck and seen anglers leaving flopping fish on the surface especially in places that never see a conversation officer.
 

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I didn't know that logging first aid attendants were trained in aquatic revival techniques. Neither of my sons, who instruct life guards (NLS and CPR), were ever given instruction in trout revival. Who knew!!
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Sorry I messed up and should have read what is already here on the forum. My emotions about what I have witnessed some so called anglers do in many places in BC so that they do not "limit out" too soon got the better of me.

On a brighter note. The fact that most fish will dive as an instinctual response is a great adaptation for their survival especially if the lake has turned over. The obvious reason for this is that the O2 saturation levels where you try to revive them will be lower than at the bottom of the lake because O2 saturation is proportional to temperature.

So the water temp where you revive a fish is a factor in how much O2 is in the water. Therefore if you are fishing from shore wade out or if you are in a boat in close move out a little from the shallows to revive the fish as every bit of O2 in the water is going to make a difference. Also if the fish dives it will not be in shallow water.
 

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Sorry I messed up and should have read what is already here on the forum. My emotions about what I have witnessed some so called anglers do in many places in BC so that they do not "limit out" too soon got the better of me....
Well Reeman, I wouldn't say you "messed up" necessarily, it does bring the topic fish handling back to the surface of the forum and it seems you had good intentions...don't fret it too much. We're pretty picky about our fish handling here at BCFR, and gloves are being done away with it seems over the years as more and more anglers make the conscious decision to stop using them, but every set back can still be an opportunity to provide a good message to the readers.

Excellent points about oxygen levels and making sure the fish is properly revived. Other good points made here by some of the responding members about not overplaying the fish, not using gloves, and not to move the fish back and forth, these are excellent points too.

it has always felt wrong to me to let go of the fish at the first "sign that it could keep itself upright" because my hands are cold or there was discomfort or pain from the process. I've never been able to justify it...it's always seemed a cop out to me to trick, play and land a fish and then not perform my due diligence reviving it to make sure it's absolutely ok. It seems the least we can do given we are the ones harassing the fish in the first place right?

I remember a time fishing Dragon, (since reeman mentions it), Fish Finder and I were fishing a little bay and doing well on micro leeches, it was october and pretty damned cold too...anyways this fish just wasn't ready to go yet, maybe it was the cold, or the battle, who knows, but I held on to that fish for what must have been 15-20 min or more...drifted all the way into the weeds with the wind still holding that fish...couldn't feel my hands, but I could see she was breathing and had life in her. I was so wedged into that weed bed from the wind I thought I would never get out, or get the feeling back in my hands for that matter. Finally she gave a kick, and then another, and suddenly zipped out of my hands with a bolt for the deep water, as strong as she was before I had met her...

So a word to the readers looking for the advice that the title of this thread purported to offer...

Keep the fish in the water, whether you are on a river, lake or ocean, in a proper net is fine and often very useful, but whatever you do don't release the animal prematurely because your hands are cold, or you think it will be ok, revive the fish to the point that you know it will be ok.

Here's a basic point form break down:

-get someone to help you if need be

-Do not use gloves, not only are they a vector for disease transfer, but they can also very easily remove the protective slime layer of the fish and although you may think the fish swam away ok, it may die days or weeks later due to the infection unknowingly caused by using a glove.

-Use bare wet hands and/or a soft mesh, fish friendly net to handle the fish, restrain it with one hand at the wrist of the tail, and support the bulk of the body weight under the pectoral fins with your other hand.

-Hold the fish in the water. If you must take a picture, have the camera man at the ready and lift it up quickly for a snapshot and then put it back down again.

-Do not move the fish back and forth, simply hold the animal nose into the current (if there is a current), otherwise keep it still and allow it time to recover from its ordeal when it is ready, not when you want it to be.

It is, and always has been, the position of this website and responsible, conscientious anglers everywhere that by fishing for our fabulous sportfish and wishing to practice catch and release, whatever the species or locale, we accept by default, the responsibility to properly restrain and revive our catch for successful release to survive to fight another day.


:cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ribby there are times when have deliberately fished with a barbless and pointless hook beside people who fish only to count and statistically record things with cameras. As being on the pond and having a chance to catch a beautiful fish is of much greater importance than stats or my stomach. Though at times my stomach does win out and I bonk for the table, which does become part of the much vaunted and talked about personal fishing stats. :cheers: So yes my intentions, like yours when reviving fish are genuine as are many who sport fish. Thank you for tipping me off about the possibility of transmitting viruses and other pathogens while using neoprene soft rubber palm swimming gloves. I have only ever used them when the conditions are really insanely cold though.

Perhaps I will start packing some sterile extra large disposable medicals and using them over top of my comfort gloves then packing them out and disposing of them, like we do for humans. And cleaning and disinfecting my hand shoes!!! And thanks very much for reminding me to take my reels apart and service the disk drags before coming to fish up North.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Caution Humour to Follow!

Ok here we are at the crux of the issue.

And that is how do you create a current to the head of the fish when doing fish resuscitation within a net on a lake without pumping a fish?

Simple and obvious patent idea here is to create a water-proof case for a battery powered electric screw driver.

The case will be attached to a folding jointed handle and have a coupling to a sealed shaft inside holding the cheap rechargeable electric screw driver in place to turn a jet shielded slow flow propeller.

The device could be quite small, simple and easy to work and have a waterproof switch as well.

So if this device does not already exist somewhere on the planet perhaps it should.

Naturally if the only intention of those building this simple and obvious device is to make gobs of cash money off rich anglers then "EAT MY SHORTS YOU SAW IT HERE FIRST!" And it is time stamped May 29 2013 elsewhere.

The Reeman :wallbash:
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Design suggestion for fish rescusitaion device.

A fisherman's aquatic respiration tool

Or the F.A.R.T

A plastic shell designed to hold a motorized battery powered with a low speed propeller shielded from contact with a fish or fishing net, the device will be narrow in design to increase flow over the device to a shielded external jet propeller, which shall produce a current in the water that the fisherman can direct at the mouth of a fish and thereby increase the amount of water the fish can access for the purposes of recovering consciousness and life with stressed and dying sport fish.

Naturally what you did not read about the F.A.R.T is that it will also have an aeration air pump that will increase the O2 level as well as slowly direct a small SLOW current of lightly aerated water at a fish.

This description of a device most likely will receive a patent in the US as there it is entirely possible for someone to actually PATENT A FART
 

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Ok here we are at the crux of the issue.

And that is how do you create a current to the head of the fish when doing fish resuscitation within a net on a lake without pumping a fish?



The Reeman :wallbash:
Contrary to many misguided assumptions, you don't need to "create a current to the head of the fish" any more than you need to create a wind to revive yourself after running up hill. The movement of the fish's gill plates draws water over the gills where gas exchange takes place (O2 in-CO2 out), in much the same way the movement of your diaphragm draws air into your lungs. It might take a bit of time, but the need for current doesn't exist-witness the number of fish surviving in lakes. They are not constantly moving, but still don't succumb to asphyxiation.

"For a fish to efficiently transfer oxygen from the water to the blood stream, water must pass over the gill surfaces in a front-to-back direction. Moving a fish back and forth in the water does not optimize the oxygen uptake and can even be detrimental to recovery. Holding a fish steady, allow the fish to naturally pulse the gills inducing flow over the gill surfaces." - Ohio State Department of Natural Resources http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/Default.aspx?tabid=18624

Let me see:
1. Use a glove to handle fish.
2. Move the fish back and forth to revive it.
3. Buy my fish reviving tool.
4. I believe myself to be a fishing authority.

Reeman looks to me like you are ready to replace Pendlington, Izumi and Cooper as the next, great Canadian TV fishing show host.
:thumbup:
 
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Discussion Starter #15
Contrary to many misguided assumptions, you don't need to "create a current to the head of the fish" any more than you need to create a wind to revive yourself after running up hill. The movement of the fish's gill plates draws water over the gills where gas exchange takes place (O2 in-CO2 out), in much the same way the movement of your diaphragm draws air into your lungs. It might take a bit of time, but the need for current doesn't exist-witness the number of fish surviving in lakes. They are not constantly moving, but still don't succumb to asphyxiation.

"For a fish to efficiently transfer oxygen from the water to the blood stream, water must pass over the gill surfaces in a front-to-back direction. Moving a fish back and forth in the water does not optimize the oxygen uptake and can even be detrimental to recovery. Holding a fish steady, allow the fish to naturally pulse the gills inducing flow over the gill surfaces." - Ohio State Department of Natural Resources http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/Default.aspx?tabid=18624

Let me see:
1. Use a glove to handle fish.
2. Move the fish back and forth to revive it.
3. Buy my fish reviving tool.
4. I believe myself to be a fishing authority.
If you read my introduction you will find that I am not at all averse to being beat on and corrected by those who truly know the score. However one point here is that often when releasing river fish that are even more exhausted than fat lake fish, holding them into the current seems to work magic. Especially on rivers like the Adams or the Thompson. So I might take a little bit of an exception to someone POO HOOING a F.A.R.T

One really great American angler that once fished close to me actually held his dying rainbow in the prop wash of his Minkota. However if the fish is that close to death the only blender I use is after smoking the fish and then putting some of the results in a blender with cream cheese for Christmas.

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well so an old saw is completely true then?

THERE IS NO money to be made selling FARTS, I guess?

SHOULD HAVE KNOWN better the idea came to me in a bath tub after having two beer!
 
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