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Thread: Kenai River slot limit....

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    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Default Kenai River slot limit....

    New and improved for 2014:

    Hot off the press today, slot limit goes down to 42" effective for the 2014 season. Finally some REAL protection for the extremely valuable population-sustaining egg-wagons that have been horribly depleted in the early run thru fishery-induced selection. Weir counts in the major spawning tribs in 2013 showed that hens were down to the 14-18% range of the total spawning escapement.

    Additionally, the ER conservation demarcation has been moved downriver to the bottom of the newly expanded Slikok sanctuary. This area will be subject to ER restrictions thru mid July.

    It's only taken 12 years to finally get it right.

    YEE HAW!
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    The KeenEye MD

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    Good start however being a life-long Alaskan I think the only answer is C&R only for Chinook Salmon on the Kenai...but what do I know? I have never kept a King on the river.


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    Hopefully a little more enforcement of this rule will be present. I doubt many, if any, guides will break this rule, but i am sure there are plenty of private anglers that will hide her in the box and filet her at home

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    I'm all about protection but I know frome experience it takes a skilled fish handler to tape a big live king without adding to the stress of the fight, landing, pictures....and now tape work. I appreciate what the slot is trying to do but still exposes extra stress to the fish on the edge. No matter what, this river is getting loved to death.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    I'm all about protection but I know frome experience it takes a skilled fish handler to tape a big live king without adding to the stress of the fight, landing, pictures....and now tape work. I appreciate what the slot is trying to do but still exposes extra stress to the fish on the edge. No matter what, this river is getting loved to death.
    If you think anglers are bad, have you ever watched ADF&G with their in river test nets? The young girls and boys who work the nets struggle to get the fish out of the net, put a rope around their tail and then into the cradle for measuring, scale samples, etc. Ever put a stop watch on them? I haven't but I know they net them near the sonar and many times it's not until midway through the pasture that the fish is released.

    I know ADF&G uses a mortality rate of 8% for released sport caught kings. Wonder what their own percentage is?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    I'm all about protection but I know frome experience it takes a skilled fish handler to tape a big live king without adding to the stress of the fight, landing, pictures....and now tape work. I appreciate what the slot is trying to do but still exposes extra stress to the fish on the edge. No matter what, this river is getting loved to death.
    The lion's share of ER effort is guided. Guides, having caught and handled and weighed MANY more ER kings than the average Joe, are skilled enough to know what's legal and what's not even BEFORE a fish comes to hand in 95% of the cases.

    The upper end of a 42" fish is gonna be in the 35# range. If you've got a fish pushing 35#, be prepared to measure it before heaving it aboard. If it's clearly bigger than 35#, it ain't a keeper. If it's clearly smaller, then it should get a sound dose of wood shampoo if the angler wants fillets for the cooler.

    BTW, if the point is to simply determine keeper or non-keeper, then forget about the tape... WAY too cumbersome. Simply cut a dowel to 42" and carry it on board at all times while fishing. Just place it alongside the fish upon landing for a quick and dirty measure. If you accidentally drop it, no biggy, it floats. Just remember that a fish laying in the water RARELY lays perfectly straight, so it will almost always measure out just a bit LONGER once you heave it on deck. If you're really worried, cut your dowel to 41 inches for a bit of fudge factor.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    For those who don't currently own a fish friendly C&R net, I highly recommend this one...

    http://www.promarnets.com/promar/Pro...Cat=1&Item=132

    Generous enough the accommodate a slot-sized king, and have it lay flat close to the surface where it can be more easily measured. If you already have a nice frame/hoop, they sell this bag as a replacement net alone (no frame/hoop).
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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    ......or don't fish at all in expected low returns. And if you chose to fish in years of abundance and release your fish then it's ok to stress it out and negatively impact it.

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    Member moose-head's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishNphysician View Post
    ..,if the point is to simply determine keeper or non-keeper, then forget about the tape... WAY too cumbersome. Simply cut a dowel to 42" and carry it on board at all times while fishing. Just place it alongside the fish upon landing for a quick and dirty measure. If you accidentally drop it, no biggy, it floats. Just remember that a fish laying in the water RARELY lays perfectly straight, so it will almost always measure out just a bit LONGER once you heave it on deck. If you're really worried, cut your dowel to 41 inches for a bit of fudge factor.
    .

    This is works well, I have a length of rope with knots tied so that the center of one knot is the end and the other knot is on the 41" or 42" I toss that into the water while holding onto the end with no knot so that it floats next to the fish and it gives me a fairly accurate idea of the length
    And let's me know if closer scrutiny is needed
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    Quote Originally Posted by penguin View Post
    If you think anglers are bad, have you ever watched ADF&G with their in river test nets? The young girls and boys who work the nets struggle to get the fish out of the net, put a rope around their tail and then into the cradle for measuring, scale samples, etc. Ever put a stop watch on them? I haven't but I know they net them near the sonar and many times it's not until midway through the pasture that the fish is released.

    I know ADF&G uses a mortality rate of 8% for released sport caught kings. Wonder what their own percentage is?
    Well this is not good news because we are told we have a certain amount of time to handle the fish before it must be released…….and not just kings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kenaibow fan View Post
    Well this is not good news because we are told we have a certain amount of time to handle the fish before it must be released…….and not just kings.
    I don't believe the amount of time allowed is THAT prescriptive.

    Some fish take longer to get a hook out, disentangle from a net, or revive. No one is gonna get a citation for that.

    What folks should keep in mind first and foremost is AIRTIME… or more correctly, suffocation time. Exchange for fresh oxygen and release of carbon dioxide buildup goes to virtually ZERO whenever the fish's head is removed from the water. Same when the fish's jaws are lassoed closed.

    Even if the fish is restrained for a time, it will do just fine as long as is jaws can open, gill covers can flap, and gill arches are submerged.
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    I have released hundreds of kings and we have a pretty good system. We use heavy leaders (80Lb), single hooks, and a heavy glove and a wire release aid. Very rarely do we use a net. Fish are played for as short a time as possible. Most releases include a face full of water when the fish splashes off! We don't handle the fish at all or take hero shots. It doesn't always go as planned, but it is the best that we have tried so far. A fixed stick cut to the lower slot limit has also been the best option for measuring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fishNphysician View Post
    I don't believe the amount of time allowed is THAT prescriptive.

    Some fish take longer to get a hook out, disentangle from a net, or revive. No one is gonna get a citation for that.

    What folks should keep in mind first and foremost is AIRTIME… or more correctly, suffocation time. Exchange for fresh oxygen and release of carbon dioxide buildup goes to virtually ZERO whenever the fish's head is removed from the water. Same when the fish's jaws are lassoed closed.

    Even if the fish is restrained for a time, it will do just fine as long as is jaws can open, gill covers can flap, and gill arches are submerged.
    I don't know that I completely agree, I think you have to account for stress too Doc.
    By the way, do you by chance know ever case for the build up of lactic acid in fish? I know it builds from the fight its self but are there other things that cause it as far as handling fish? I am guessing its the same for fish as people?

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    Lactic acidosis is a metabolic acidification of the bloodstream caused by sustained physical exercise which outpaces the ability to supply oxygen to the muscles burning it. The muscle is forced to work "anaerobically" (without oxygen), but doing so causes a buildup of the waste product lactic acid. Severity can be mild and inoccuous to severe and irreversible, depending on how long the situation of anaerobic exercise is allowed to persist. (The longer and more exhaustive the battle, the greater the lactic acid buildup). Continued oxygen deprivation (excessive post-fight "airtime" for a fish intended for release) makes the situation progressively worse.

    Blood pH progressively decreases (acidosis) with various adverse effects on the affected animal, most critically cardiovascular dysfunction which can be deadly. Metabolic acidosis reduces the ability of cardiac muscle to efficiently contract, causes cardiac arrhythmias (abnormal/inefficient heart rhythms), and reduces vascular tone which increases the intravascular space… all of which can lead to diminished cardiac output and hypotension, leading to very sluggish blood flow. Add a hemorrhagic hooking wound to deplete total blood volume, and the critter's in a world of hurt as there may no longer be enough blood to keep all of the intravascular space "primed" to maintain sufficient blood flow to the rest of the body organs. Without adequate blood flow other critical organ systems fail and the critter is basically toast.

    The most expeditious mechanism to relieve lactic acidosis without pharmacologic intervention is 1) REST to stop the buildup of lactic acid and 2) HYPERVENTILATION to increase blood pH by compensatory respiratory alkalosis.

    Turning a fish upside down (belly up) has a disorienting and calming effect on the fish to make hook extraction easier with less thrashing. Once the hook is out, place the fish upright headfirst into the current. Keep its head in the water! It's paramount that the jaws are free to open/close, and the gill covers are free to flap to ensure maximum exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. The fish can be gently supported for as long as it takes to regain its vigor. It'll take off of its own volition and power when it's ready.
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
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  15. #15

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    If you have to go through all this to revive a fish, you are doing something wrong. This should only occur in the worst case scenario. If you want to catch and release ; tighten your drags , use single hooks, heavy leaders, keep them out of the net and in the water.

  16. #16

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    I would also think that the slot limit at least given the current dismal run counts and almost statewide closures should follow suit. Maybe an even tighter slot until numbers pick back up, if they pick up.

    I hate to say it, but some protection now of even a 10 lb fish MAY help out later on down the road if things continually degrade. I like to eat fish as much as the next guy but not to the demise of a resource. One fish wont hurt much, many will!

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