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How big do they have to be... #13720754 10/05/20 03:32 PM
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TryHard Offline OP
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Before you decide to throw them back rather than eating them? We caught a 15+” and I’m wishing I’d thrown it back. What’s your rule of thumb?

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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13720769 10/05/20 03:42 PM
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Its personal choice. Does it make a difference in the fish population/gene pool, no. I prefer to eat the 10-11 inchers myself.

Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13720776 10/05/20 03:46 PM
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The ideal eaters to me are 11- to 12-inchers, especially those chunky black fish.

Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13720782 10/05/20 03:56 PM
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Crappie are prolific breeders. I wouldn’t worry about releasing crappie over a certain length. It will have little to no effect on the population. If it’s a keeper, keep it. Or if it makes you feel good to release the larger fish, you can do that too.


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13722212 10/06/20 08:24 PM
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I'm no biologist, but I have to believe a 15" fish is nearing the end of it's life cycle. I also prefer the 10-11" fish for eating.


"I'd rather be fishing!"




Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13722312 10/06/20 10:04 PM
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I am a wildlife biologist. roflmao The decision to keep big fish depends on your management goals. I would release fish over 15” to give other anglers a chance at catching a big fish. If you want to keep them that is ok too. Every time I release a big fish I hope I am giving another angler the chance to catch a fish of a lifetime.

Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: RODS454] #13722316 10/06/20 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by RODS454
I'm no biologist, but I have to believe a 15" fish is nearing the end of it's life cycle. I also prefer the 10-11" fish for eating.


I would say that a crappie has reached the end of its lifecycle when it swims near that big yellow boat.

But I am also not a biologist. bolt


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13722374 10/06/20 11:01 PM
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I usually throw back the 15 t. Just my two cents. 2cents


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13722495 10/07/20 01:14 AM
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I only keep Crappie 12"s or longer. To me, it just has more meat on each fish at that size. I'm retired and usually keep 12-14 crappie per trip.

By releasing the 10-11" fish, I figure I'll probably catch them again next year. Kind of shallow of me to think like that but I catch plenty of fish anyway, so no pressure.

If I don't end up with a mess I don't have to filet fish......lol.


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13726459 10/10/20 09:35 PM
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I will only keep 10 inch fish if they are pretty thick. Normally I only keep 12 inch plus fish unless I just need fish for a fish fry.


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13726538 10/10/20 10:42 PM
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11" & 12" are the gooder eaters. Throwing back anything I have to get the measuring stick out for and anything I think is a big'un. grin

Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: TryHard] #13726725 10/11/20 01:54 AM
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I like to keep 6-12 fish 11" or better. Will also keep 10" if deep hooked or gill damaged. If I'm doing good, I will bump up to over 12" as a minnimu. Dont like to clean a lot of fish and would much rather keep larger only. Also, we rarely fry fish, and bigger ones bake and steam much better IMHO.


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: HV Lurenut] #13726830 10/11/20 04:03 AM
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Originally Posted by HV Lurenut
I like to keep 6-12 fish 11" or better. Will also keep 10" if deep hooked or gill damaged. If I'm doing good, I will bump up to over 12" as a minnimu. Dont like to clean a lot of fish and would much rather keep larger only. Also, we rarely fry fish, and bigger ones bake and steam much better IMHO.



Bigger ones also cook up mega tasty, on the grill, seasoned with the skin on. Grill in foil with your choice of seasoning, then take out of foil and grill skin side down, to char it a little, and the meat will flake right off.

Yummy!

Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: MilesHunter] #13726911 10/11/20 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by MilesHunter
Originally Posted by RODS454
I'm no biologist, but I have to believe a 15" fish is nearing the end of it's life cycle. I also prefer the 10-11" fish for eating.


I would say that a crappie has reached the end of its lifecycle when it swims near that big yellow boat.

But I am also not a biologist. bolt


roflmao


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Re: How big do they have to be... [Re: RODS454] #13726915 10/11/20 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by RODS454
Originally Posted by MilesHunter
Originally Posted by RODS454
I'm no biologist, but I have to believe a 15" fish is nearing the end of it's life cycle. I also prefer the 10-11" fish for eating.


I would say that a crappie has reached the end of its lifecycle when it swims near that big yellow boat.

But I am also not a biologist. bolt


roflmao

NOw this is Funny!! roflmao roflmao

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