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Thread: Bleeding reds?

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    Default Bleeding reds?

    Never reallly bled fish before, but should you bleed the gills of reds while dipnetting? We just wack them instantly anyways. To bleed do you just put the ole fillet knife into their gills and pull or what? - thanks, any advice/tips are appreciated

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    I use a set of Trauma shears. Seems to work easier for me.

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    Member jmg's Avatar
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    Usually when I pull a red in, either fishing or dipnetting, I whack them on the head with a small bat first. I usually then pick them up by placing my fingers along side their "throat" into the gill plates. I've sliced the gills with a knife before, but also sliced fingers before too since they are all up in there at the same time. So now, I just grab them in the gills with one hand and reach up with two fingers from my other hand and give a good tug. The gills break every time and they bleed out nicely. Unfortunately, I have not been able to practice this much this year yet.

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    Default scissors

    Kitchen shears work good for gills and tails.

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    Member tull777's Avatar
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    Yes, maybe bleed the reds. I did a test on a couple of fish this year, one bled and one not. Huge difference between fishy and none fishy taste. I was amazed. Also, the none bled fish went all stiff and the bleeder stayed limp over a longer period of time.
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    Member DMan's Avatar
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    I cut their throat as soon as I catch them. Hits that main artery and will spray blood but gets it out quick.
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    Take advantage of gravity and hold/place the fish head down to maximally drain off all the blood.

    Every salmon destined for the table, regardless of species, should be immediately bled out.
    "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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    I use a method close to that but I keep going till the neck is broke. Once you do that the fish does not move one bit. It bleeds them out and kills them instantly.

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    Default Yes but.....

    Dead fish don't bleed. It's okay to bonk the fish to stun it, but don't hit hard enough to kill it. Normally, I don't bonk my fish. I just cut the gills (scissors/knife) and run a rope thru the gill cover and out the mouth, toss it back into the water, and then tie it to a tree/rock. That will keep the fish alive while it bleeds out. Within a few minutes, it will die of blood loss.

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    Default Alaska Regs Prohibit Live Fish On A Stringer

    Quote Originally Posted by Cohoangler View Post
    Dead fish don't bleed. It's okay to bonk the fish to stun it, but don't hit hard enough to kill it. Normally, I don't bonk my fish. I just cut the gills (scissors/knife) and run a rope thru the gill cover and out the mouth, toss it back into the water, and then tie it to a tree/rock. That will keep the fish alive while it bleeds out. Within a few minutes, it will die of blood loss.
    Check your Alaska regs guys, if you keep a fish alive on a stringer (even if it is to kill it) you can get into trouble becuase it is illegal - page 56 of our regs book, I beleive. Bleeding the fish does have a great advantage over not; part of my sales pitch about my stringers is exactly that; you end up with a higher quality of meat if you bleed the fish a keep them in the water after you subdue them with a head strike. Ripping the gill with your finger is the easiest way for me; Kenai Keeper Jim and I have been doing it for years and we have yet to hear about any complaints on the quality of our fish. I've just started to rip both sides; I used to only rip one but found that it didn't get all of the blood out so you might try that.
    "He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit is better than he who takes a city." ~ Proverbs 16:32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Back Country Robb View Post
    Check your Alaska regs guys, if you keep a fish alive on a stringer (even if it is to kill it) you can get into trouble becuase it is illegal - page 56 of our regs book, I beleive.
    I looked for this but couldn't find it. Can you post exactly what the regs say? I do this with a lot of fish. Catch it, bonk it, cut its gills, put it on a stringer and toss it back in the water. I mainly put them back in the water to cut down on the mess. If you got several fish bleeding out in the back of the boat you quickly start looking like a Stephen King movie!

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Back Country Robb View Post
    Check your Alaska regs guys, if you keep a fish alive on a stringer (even if it is to kill it) you can get into trouble becuase it is illegal - page 56 of our regs book, I beleive. Bleeding the fish does have a great advantage over not; part of my sales pitch about my stringers is exactly that; you end up with a higher quality of meat if you bleed the fish a keep them in the water after you subdue them with a head strike. Ripping the gill with your finger is the easiest way for me; Kenai Keeper Jim and I have been doing it for years and we have yet to hear about any complaints on the quality of our fish. I've just started to rip both sides; I used to only rip one but found that it didn't get all of the blood out so you might try that.
    Wow. I think that is a real stretch. I truly believe that any F/W would readily accept the fact that you intend to keep that fish, if it has been mortally wounded and on a stringer. What they will not accept is a fish tied up that could conceivably be released when you catch a larger or fresher one. Got to apply the common sense test to these deals, I guess. Bottom line for me though, is that I NEVER put a fish back in the water that I want to eat. It gets bled, butchered and iced all in minutes. I take the time with each and every fish. Seen too many fish ruined by people leaving them in the water. Even a river is not cold enough to do the job properly.

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    Default Oops

    That was last years' regs; this year you can find it on the bottom of page 13 Under "Caring For Your Catch" and under "Posession or Marking of Live Fish" on page 4.

    - I don't think that killing your fish on a stringer counts as keeping it alive though; kind of a gray area not specified; becuase the fish is, for a short time, alive on the stringer... are you breaking the law for that amount of time it's alive?
    Last edited by Back Country Robb; 07-17-2007 at 09:36. Reason: Added remarks
    "He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit is better than he who takes a city." ~ Proverbs 16:32

  14. #14

    Default All true

    I agree that icing the fish after bleeding is the best way to go, but often not practical. Keeping the fish in the cold (have you fallen in lately?) river water is way, way better IMO than watching guys toss them on the bank until they leave. I used to deckhand on a gillnetter (gasp) and we started bleeding those fish and icing them in a ice/saltwater (inlet water) mix. That will get colder than ice alone; not sure how that works, but it does. Here in Hawaii, with temps fairly warm all year, icing is mandatory; I was shocked when we first started going on guided trips in Alaska; no ice for Kenai kings, or even silvers out of Seward. ANY fish will taste better and last longer if bled & iced & processed as soon as practical. I learned about proper icing/brining while deckhanding on a charter boat here (Hawaii). With large yellowfin tuna, guys generally cut out all the guts & gills, then some take a stainless steel rod, slice the tuna near the forehead, then insert that rod into the spine and run it down the body of the fish-ouch, but instant death and apparently stops all body functions.
    Even pinks, with proper care upon catching them, will stay ok in the freezer. I had 8 of them in my freezer for 6 months and they were still pretty good (note that they were caught in the salt).
    Jim

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    Witnessed a brown shirt a few years back directing people at the Russian who had alive fish on stringers to kill them as it was illegal to stringer live fish (his words). Many folks had a fish or two in self made rock pools that were on stringers and not dead.

    Just what I saw I believe most would give you a warning but the regulations are clear on killing the fish that are on your stinger. I supose they want to prevent people from using a stinger like a live well and tossing the smaller fish back when the catch a larger fish?

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    When dipping I have the whole family out, as it allows us to take much better care of the fish. I where neoprene scuba gloves, it protects my hands, and I can just reach in a rip a few gills to bleed the fish. My daughter is nuts about cleaning fish, so she guts them and washes them off. Then the boys pull them on snow sleds to the cooler and put them on ice.

    I see some folks filleting the fish right on the beach, but I can't see how they keep the sand and dirt out of the flesh. I take the fish home, vacuum bag and freeze them. I'll also keep them in the round, the less surface area of the flesh to freezer burn, the better the fish keeps.

    Personal use fisheries are a wonderful priveledge, please respect the resource by taking the best possible care of the fish.

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    Default Bleed, better fish

    When snagging reds in Main Bay, I place them on a stringer, live and cut their gills with a knife. I find the meat is much better. There is a BIG difference in the taste and texture of the meat. They die within a few minutes. Then I place them on some glacier Ice in my cooler.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Jim View Post
    I agree that icing the fish after bleeding is the best way to go, but often not practical. Keeping the fish in the cold (have you fallen in lately?) river water is way, way better IMO than watching guys toss them on the bank until they leave.
    Jim
    I disagree. Cool is always preferred, but dry is better than soaking in water. I never allow caught fish to sit in the water. I gut them as soon as possible and then keep them clean and dry. The meat quality is much better this way.

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    Member AKBassking's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pid View Post
    I disagree. Cool is always preferred, but dry is better than soaking in water. I never allow caught fish to sit in the water. I gut them as soon as possible and then keep them clean and dry. The meat quality is much better this way.
    I would also agree. If you leave the fish in the water too long the quality starts to suffer. If you spend all that time and money to get your fish, then you need to take that extra little time to care for the meat.

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  20. #20

    Thumbs up

    Yea , you don't want to keep your fish in the water. Mr. Pid is correct in his analysis. Cut their throat, gut them and keep them dry. I fillet them and put them in clear ziplocks covered in ice. I always take ice with me. I fill my whole hold with ice. I also take the skin off unless I'm keeping some for smoking and even then I'll sometimes take the skin off for smoking.

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