Fishermen release fish they’ve caught for a variety of reasons. Unfortunately, each time we catch and release a fish, there is a chance that the fish will not survive. Those fish negatively impact the overall health of the fish stock and can reduce the amount of fish that can be harvested. Fortunately, there are a number of things that we can do to increase survival of released fish.
How Big of a Problem is Mortality of Released Fish?
What Can I Do to Increase the Chance That Fish I Release Will Survive?
Best Practices for Catching
- Target Open Species
- Fish in shallow/cooler waters
- Limit fight time
- Use non-stainless steel circle hooks
Best Practices for Releasing
- Use a de-hooking device
- Use a descending device or properly vent if a fish displays signs of barotrauma
- Minimize handling