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Jan 23rd, 2013
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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788034
06/11/18 06:06 PM
06/11/18 06:06 PM
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Frisco, TX
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As long as there are tournaments in the heat of summer with air temps at 100+ and surface temps in the mid to upper 80's, some fish are going to die, especially if they are caught deep and not fizzed. That all being said, I would still say there is more the anglers can do to help. I've fished my share of tournaments and have never lost a fish. Granted I fish very few of them in July and August but I have fished a few during those months.

When Squaw creek had their very first Fun and Sun charity event before the lake opened back up to the public, they gave a very informative seminar on fish care the night before the event and if memory serves me, there wasn't a single dead fish weighed in. It was basic stuff like adding the right amount of ice, a little H2O2 and obviously some Please Release Me. They actually had a huge load of ice brought in and required all teams to buy 3 or 4 bags to help with livewell temps. Maybe that's something to consider for these events on Rayburn.


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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788052
06/11/18 06:16 PM
06/11/18 06:16 PM
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Austin, Tx/Nacogdoches, Tx
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I remember the old Bassnbucks on Rayburn in the summer giving out rejuvenade as you checked in before take off. I wish Rayburn had a lake/bass association that helped with this. I'd certainly donate if I knew it would save some 5-9lbers. I see very few teams with extra coolers. No way you can bring enough ice in most boat coolers

Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788071
06/11/18 06:28 PM
06/11/18 06:28 PM
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nederland, TX
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I think a lot of people don't know what it takes and sometimes it just happens even if guys are trying. We had not sat that was dead within 10 minutes. We tried to stop it but whatever we did didn't help. It was just hooked in a part where it bled and I think the heat won't let it stop. That doesn't happen much for us, we are pretty good about keeping them alive. But I will be the first to admit I read every thread or article because I still haven't found that full proof remedy. Fizzing needs to be taught more for sure. We made our own clips like Latta did and use them a lot. Do y'all fizz thru the mouth or side? We do the mouth but I read where it's better thru the side. Lots of info out there and lots of wrong stuff. We even have the TPWD o2 system in the boat.

Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788077
06/11/18 06:31 PM
06/11/18 06:31 PM
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Albany
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Originally Posted By: Jaret Latta
In the last 3 weeks I've heard of lots of dead fish on Rayburn during TxTT Championship, ABA weekend series and the tournament out of Monterrey. I know tpw has done studies on delayed mortality but at what point do they stop having events in the summer? I think they should be required to have a release boat instead of dumping at the ramp. Maybe even pay tpw to help with fish care. Can't be good for the fishery to be losing lots of big fish. Ultimately it's up the angler but it sure seems alot of guys just aren't making the extra effort.


I agree on the release boat. I wish we could figure out how to have one here too. Release boats make sense and if nothing else local chambers of commerce should build one and require any tournaments to buy a 50.00 permit per day and that help pay for the release boat and someone to run it. Usually only need it running for a couple hours.

I wanted to add that about 5 years ago I was talking with Denny Braur at the ramp and he said that he never adds ice just but he never ever uses his timers from May to October. He keeps the livewells running the whole time. I started doing this and I have not had a single fish die since. And they all swim away.
Another thing I started doing was using Rejuvinade about an hour before weigh in. It gives them some kick. I learned not to use it all day just right before I went in.
Weigh ins should also have a salt water dip to dip fish in right before release. It helps protect against fungus that forms from handling.

Last edited by 9094; 06/11/18 06:37 PM.
Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: fouzman] #12788105
06/11/18 06:55 PM
06/11/18 06:55 PM
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Ok, USA
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Originally Posted By: fouzman
I think TPWD should just outlaw tournaments completely. Just kidding. However, I think having five fish stringer tournaments anywhere in Texas this time of year is STUPID. 3 fish max and a 2 lb penalty for a dead fish, instead of .50 lb.

Agree with you Fouz. Also, I still believe all tournaments should pay a fee to access any lake or body of water they use. This would hopefully decrease the overall number of tournaments, esp on highly pressured lakes and the money would go back to the wildlife department to help keep the fishery healthy.



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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788108
06/11/18 06:57 PM
06/11/18 06:57 PM
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ABA has a tank with water to fill your bag after you weigh in. But some guys are to lazy. They walk right by it and then make the long walk to the release boat with the fish in the bag with no water. Then run into a buddy on the walk back and spend a couple minutes talking about the big ones they lost. If a tournament offers a tank to put fresh water in the bag use it. The guy running the release boat was working his tail off trying to save fish.

Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: horseplaydvm] #12788126
06/11/18 07:08 PM
06/11/18 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted By: horseplaydvm
Originally Posted By: fouzman
I think TPWD should just outlaw tournaments completely. Just kidding. However, I think having five fish stringer tournaments anywhere in Texas this time of year is STUPID. 3 fish max and a 2 lb penalty for a dead fish, instead of .50 lb.

Agree with you Fouz. Also, I still believe all tournaments should pay a fee to access any lake or body of water they use. This would hopefully decrease the overall number of tournaments, esp on highly pressured lakes and the money would go back to the wildlife department to help keep the fishery healthy.


Pay a fee to access a public body of water already propped up by taxpayer money at the expense of the tournament organization who pays (sometimes) for the venue and will take it out of the payout of the same people who paid to put the fish in the lake in the first place?


"Its not an addiction...its a disease! and I LIKE it! keeps my sanity in this cruel world!"
Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788131
06/11/18 07:12 PM
06/11/18 07:12 PM
Joined: Nov 2016
Posts: 317
East Texas
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It takes a team effort to keep fish alive. Think of it as a hospital environment. If a patient is brought into the hospital dehydrated, coughing up blood and has an arm and a leg cut off, you can’t expect the doctors and nurses to save them.

Obviously, it starts with livewell management. Every brand of boat has the same type livewell lid design. They have a 1/2” to 1” downward lip around the edges. This makes it very easy to insulate your lids. Go spend $20 at Home Depot and buy some foam board insulation. Cut it the same size as your lid and wedge it in 1/2” to 1” area under your lid. This will help with the sun beating down on your lids all day and warming up your livewell water. Next time you’re in Wal Mart, go to the pool section and buy you a $3 floating thermometer. Leave this in your livewell 24/7. Next, freeze 3-4 milk jugs or 2 liter Coke bottles. They last much longer then using ice cubes. On game day, fill your livewells before the sun comes up good and starts to heat the water. Do NOT fill them while you’re power poled down in 3’ water while you’re waiting for your boat number to be called. This will only start your day off with muddy water mixed with scoshe of engine oil/fuel/exhaust. Wait until you get to your first fishing spot and fill it with good, fresh water. You can put your treatment in there now or wait until you catch fish.

The deeper you catch fish, the cooler your livewell water needs to be. (This is where you’ll use that $3 thermometer you bought at Wal Mart.) Never does it need to be 75*, but just use common sense. If you’re catching fish in 3-5’ then as long as you keep your livewell at or below waterevee the lake surface temperature is, then you’ll be fine. If you’re catching fish in 25’ then you’ll need to work to keep your water 4-5* cooler than surface temperature. Once the first fish goes in the livewell, the aerator needs to be turned to auto. Once your 3rd fish is out in, you need to start using common sense. If the fish are bigger and it’s starting to warm up considerably, then you may consider running your aerator steady rather than on auto. Once you have 5 fish and the sun is beating down, you definitely need the aerator running all the time.

Keep an eye on the water quality! Fish not only release toxins when they stress, but they also puke up that mornings meal. You now have dead fish parts floating around in the water that you’re trying to keep them alive in. Because your aerator is running, you’ll always have a certain amount of bubbles but when those bubbles start to look foamy and are brown, it’s time to pump out about half that water and add in fresh water. Yes, this will pump out your cool water and replace it with warm water, but cold poisonous water is no good either. This is where you’ll put 1-2 of your frozen bottles in there to help get the temperature back down to where you want it. You’ll also need to add a little treatment back in because you’ve diluted what you had. It’s not uncommon to swap the water out 3-4 times per day if you have a limit of fish early and they are 15+ lbs. I’ll refer to common sense again...the earlier you catch your fish, the more likely you caught them during a morning feeding frenzy. This means they are more likely to throw up their meal than if you caught them 3-4 hours after they’ve fed.

Lastly, learn to fizz fish. You can practice fizzing on days you’re fun fishing. When you catch a 2 pounder, put it in the livewell. Check on it in about 15 minutes and see if it’s laying on its side. If so, then it will need to be fizzed. I won’t go into explaining how to fizz. Go to YouTube, and there are plenty of videos on fizzing them through the side and through the mouth. Fizzing through the mouth is much easier, but you can kill one dead if you hit the artery in the top of their mouth. It’s not common to hit it, but when you do, you pretty much know it immediately.

When you get to weigh in and it’s time to put your fish in the weigh bag and take them to the scales, consider several things. First off, in your weigh in bag, there will only be a few minutes worth of oxygen to sustain your fish. Do not stop and talk to your buddy as you’re walking to the tanks. Do NOT sit your weigh in bag down on the hot asphalt or concrete. When you get to the bump tanks, grab one of the rubber hoses that are hanging on the side of the tank but the bubble stone and put it IN your bag. That will aerate your water. It does no good to simply sit your bag in the water that’s in the bump tank. Use that air hose to help aerate your fish’s water.

Lastly, if you’re going to take pictures with your fish, use common sense (there are those words again). Grab your fish out of the bag and take the picture quickly. Don’t let the fish stay out of the water for more than 2030 seconds. Do NOT drop your fish on the hot asphalt and let flop around frying the little bit of slime that it has left on its scales!

Now it’s OUR job to take the fish from you and return them to the lake as healthy as possible. All we can do now is keep them in good quality water and monitor them. We can fizz them if they need fizzing (remember, you were supposed to have already done this). We will put fin clips on them if they need a little help swimming upright. Other than that, we aren’t miracle workers. You, the fishermen, have to bring us a patient that we can save.

Lastly, I’ll touch on release trailers versus release boats versus a true live release system like Cassels Boykin has at their pavilion. Remember what I said earlier about your livewell can become toxic? Guess what - a release tank on a trailer can also. There’s no way to swap out the water in a 1500 gallon tank sitting under a pavilion. With every fish you add to it, you’re potentially adding more poison to the water. I’m not a fan of release trailers. There is a family at Rayburn that owns a pontoon boat that is setup to release fish. It is a good setup because they can release the water and refill with fresh water. Of course, their services have to be paid for, so this deters some tournaments from using it. Finally, the release system at Cassels Boykins is hands down the best system for fish care. Water is pumped out of the lake from under the fishing pier (in the shade) up to a 2,000 tank that is buried in the ground. This is very important because being in ground not only prevents the water from being in the direct sunlight, but it also uses the ground temperature to cool the water some. There are 2 tanks (one 200 gallon tank and one 100 gallon tank) that can be filled out of the 2,000 gallon underground tank. The 200 gallon tank is where the healthy fish are kept and the 100 gallon tank is the “hospital tank”. The 200 gallon tank has a 12” pipe that drains it directly back into the lake. So when you get 50-60 fish in the tank, you simply open the valve and the water and fish are released back into the lake. It’s not uncommon for the fish to be released back into the lake within 10 minutes of you getting them out of your livewell. The 200 gallon tank is then refilled with fresh, cool water and the cycle starts all over. Any fish that are struggling are placed into the “hospital tank” where they can monitored, fizzed, fin clipped, etc. When they get healthy, they are transferred to the 200 gallon tank and they are released with the next batch down the 12” pipe. Every pavilion should have one of these systems for use during a tournament.



Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788164
06/11/18 07:40 PM
06/11/18 07:40 PM
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Austin, Tx/Nacogdoches, Tx
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Imo side fizzing is easier and also is better on the fish. Randy Myers 2 years study says mortality rate is lower with side fizzing.
https://tpwd.texas.gov/newsmedia/releases/?req=20110202d

Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: WackySenko] #12788178
06/11/18 07:50 PM
06/11/18 07:50 PM
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Ok, USA
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Originally Posted By: WackySenko
Originally Posted By: horseplaydvm
Originally Posted By: fouzman
I think TPWD should just outlaw tournaments completely. Just kidding. However, I think having five fish stringer tournaments anywhere in Texas this time of year is STUPID. 3 fish max and a 2 lb penalty for a dead fish, instead of .50 lb.

Agree with you Fouz. Also, I still believe all tournaments should pay a fee to access any lake or body of water they use. This would hopefully decrease the overall number of tournaments, esp on highly pressured lakes and the money would go back to the wildlife department to help keep the fishery healthy.


Pay a fee to access a public body of water already propped up by taxpayer money at the expense of the tournament organization who pays (sometimes) for the venue and will take it out of the payout of the same people who paid to put the fish in the lake in the first place?

Yes, tournaments orginizations are making money off of our public body of water. Not everybody fishes tournaments and the number of tournaments on popular lakes is out of control theses days. I’m not really referring to the small club or working mans tournaments.



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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: horseplaydvm] #12788199
06/11/18 08:02 PM
06/11/18 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted By: horseplaydvm
Originally Posted By: WackySenko
Originally Posted By: horseplaydvm
Originally Posted By: fouzman
I think TPWD should just outlaw tournaments completely. Just kidding. However, I think having five fish stringer tournaments anywhere in Texas this time of year is STUPID. 3 fish max and a 2 lb penalty for a dead fish, instead of .50 lb.

Agree with you Fouz. Also, I still believe all tournaments should pay a fee to access any lake or body of water they use. This would hopefully decrease the overall number of tournaments, esp on highly pressured lakes and the money would go back to the wildlife department to help keep the fishery healthy.


Pay a fee to access a public body of water already propped up by taxpayer money at the expense of the tournament organization who pays (sometimes) for the venue and will take it out of the payout of the same people who paid to put the fish in the lake in the first place?

Yes, tournaments orginizations are making money off of our public body of water. Not everybody fishes tournaments and the number of tournaments on popular lakes is out of control theses days. I’m not really referring to the small club or working mans tournaments.


Ehh fair enough I could see the angle of a non tournament guy. And an organization making money off a state resource


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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: fouzman] #12788205
06/11/18 08:08 PM
06/11/18 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted By: fouzman
No coincidence that 3 of the top 7 in this event had dead fish. 1/2 pound is nothing. A 2 pound penalty would have changed the outcome rewarding the guys who took care of their fish while knocking a few of the high finishers down a few notches.

http://www.texasbassonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Livingston-Indi.pdf


Sometimes, it has nothing to do with fish care...
I had two fish dead in my last tourney. One was the first fish I caught and it was bleeding out as I swung it into the boat. I told my wife that I was afraid it would be dead before it could be culled, I was right. Took less than 5 minutes and it was belly up.
Fourth fish was the same way, bleeding when it came in and dead within minutes. I doctored them the best I could before they went in the well but it didn't matter. Cost me 2 places with the weight penalty but it is what it is.
FTR, they were both caught in less than 4' of water on a flipping bait.

Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788272
06/11/18 09:03 PM
06/11/18 09:03 PM
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San Angelo
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I think the penalty for a dead fish should be not being able to weigh it. The bad thing with that is, you’ll have guys tossing dead fish back and replacing with a live fish. Seen it happen. Fisherman get caught up in the “look at me” aspect and forget to take care of their fish. I will work tirelessly to make sure my fish stay healthy and comfortable. Got to protect our resource if we want to keep enjoying it.

Last edited by Josh Seale; 06/11/18 09:04 PM.

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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: Jaret Latta] #12788281
06/11/18 09:10 PM
06/11/18 09:10 PM
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Gonzales, Tx
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Dead fish are a waste of the resource. And illegal.


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Re: Summer Tournaments and Dead Fish [Re: ChuChu1] #12788336
06/11/18 09:46 PM
06/11/18 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted By: ChuChu1
Dead fish are a waste of the resource. And illegal.


Only illegal if you throw them back or in the trash......then it is considered "wanton waste".

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