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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all

I'm new to this site and have just picked up fishing after a long hiatus. I've been reading about the importance of bleeding a fish to ensure meat quality but I was wondering if cleaning/gutting the fish (as well as removing the gills immediately) is basically along the same lines. Thanks for any replies!
 

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I always bleed a fish immediately (cut the gills) and try to gut them within a few hours when fishing from the bank. Keeping the fish intact keeps the meat clean until I can finish the job and ice them. I suspect gutting and icing immediately is ideal but it's hard to pack a cooler and ice on foot. Bleeding immediately is always a good idea though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply. What I've been doing is gutting/cleaning the fish right away and putting into a cooler. I guess what I was wondering if the bleeding step was necessary if I'm gutting the fish right away.
 

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I'm sure gutting the fish does remove a lot of blood and if you gill the fish at the same time, you're probably getting pretty much the same result as I do when I bonk the fish, cut both sides of gills and hang the fish by the tail so it bleeds out as quickly as possible. The idea is to get as much blood out of the fish as you can before it coagulates.
 

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rdsteel said:
I'm sure gutting the fish does remove a lot of blood and if you gill the fish at the same time, you're probably getting pretty much the same result as I do when I bonk the fish, cut both sides of gills and hang the fish by the tail so it bleeds out as quickly as possible. The idea is to get as much blood out of the fish as you can before it coagulates.
Definately!
After wacking a fish run your knife through and behind the gills and let the heart do the rest of the bleeding and wait at least 10mins before gutting. The result is a higher quality meat with little or no blood in it.


Hotrod
 

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Bleeding immediately is the most important, Once you gut the fish bacteria starts to do it's thing...unless your carrying vinegar to rinse out the body cavity I think your better off waiting to gut it until you can get it on ice..
 

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I know this is an old thread. I do things a little different. I'm a catch and kill fisherman..I also eat everything I kill. I have a step by step routine I follow every time.
#1 I pull out gills before I bonk,just reach in and pull..yeah it seems brutal. Dip the head of the fish in the water to stimulate blood flow.
#2 Bonk the fish behind the eye on each side.
#3 Do a quick field dress.
#4 Hang from a tree branch for airflow,if the weather is very warm cover in damp burlap.
#5 NEVER let a dead fish sit in water !! Once a fish is killed water will only harm the flesh,will soften and adds a bacteria risk,ALWAYS keep cool and dry!!
#6 If not eating fresh,wrap in lint free towels in the fridge for 48 hrs this will dehydrate the flesh and will double it's freezer life !! It will also turn dark fish silver...I'm not putting you on..you will be amazed !!.
 

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For salmon it's important to bleed the fish before bonking. Slit the gills, let it bleed for several minutes, then gut, then put on ice. Not doing this will change the taste.
For trout (and bass), it's not as important and people will either bonk or let suffocate. Then they will gut.
 

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Regarding vacuum pack: May I ask what you use and if you recommend it? I was looking at getting one. Thanks.
I'm on my second foodsaver but in the interest of not hijacking here is a thread see the link below.

If you are not packing a fillet I suggest not freezing first as this will make the air cavity bigger. The less air the longer it will last and fresher it will taste. Get the most expensive you can find. I paid around $150. Mine is the stand up hands free model.


http://www.bcfishingreports.com/forums/threads/17253-Vacuum-sealing-whole-fish?highlight=vacuum
 

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For salmon it's important to bleed the fish before bonking. Slit the gills, let it bleed for several minutes, then gut, then put on ice. Not doing this will change the taste.
For trout (and bass), it's not as important and people will either bonk or let suffocate. Then they will gut.

so cut gills , bonk and how do u let it bleed out , lying flat or hanging from the head ?
 

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so cut gills , bonk and how do u let it bleed out , lying flat or hanging from the head ?
I always just let them lay flat in the cooler or whatever you are using. I have a live well on my boat that I use more as my cooler for all but larger fish. It drains overboard so you don't realize sometimes how much blood will come out of a fish. In this halibut picture you can see just how much blood has come out only minutes after cutting the gills.......just long enough to get the camera! 8) It is even more impotant in hali's and makes a huge difference in the fillets when its been bled........:2cents:
Fish Fish
 

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Regarding vacuum pack: May I ask what you use and if you recommend it? I was looking at getting one. Thanks.

We just bought one of the hand pump vacume sealers from home hardware, so far I like it you get a very good seal and the bags can be re-used. That is important to us financially and more importantly ethically.

I also have had several of the "seal a meal" machines over the years and preffer them to food savers.
 

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The best way to bleed is to cut the fish behind the gills to start the blood flowing and to cut the wrist of the tail.
Think of the difference between pouring gas from a jerry can with just the large cap off and doing it with the breather hole open, it just comes pouring out when the breather cap is off. Same for the fish, once you cut it at the tail the blood just flows right out.
 

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The best way to bleed is to cut the fish behind the gills to start the blood flowing and to cut the wrist of the tail.
Think of the difference between pouring gas from a jerry can with just the large cap off and doing it with the breather hole open, it just comes pouring out when the breather cap is off. Same for the fish, once you cut it at the tail the blood just flows right out.
Never heard that before makes sense thoug I will give it a try!
 
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