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Thread: Guides fishing and change of possession

  1. #1

    Default Guides fishing and change of possession

    There seems to be some question as to the rules regarding guides fishing with clients. I'm not sure why people can't just look in the regs because it is there in very plain English. This is for SC, so don't take this to mean it must be true in your area. I don't look at the regs for other areas because I don't fish there and I don't care. I don't fish in Tierra Del Fuego so I couldn't care less what the regs are there either. Here goes:

    On page 7 of the regs it says:

    Guides may not sport fish
    In all fresh waters of the West Cook Inlet area (map, page 20), Susitna River drainages (page 23), Knik Arm area (page 33), Anchorage Bowl area (page 36), and Kasilof River (page 43), in waters open to fishing for king salmon while a client is present or within the guide’s control or responsibility, unless the guide is providing assistance to a client with a disability as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act. This prohibition also applies to saltwater guides operating in the Early Run King Salmon Special Harvest Area (page 14) from April 1 to June 30.
    In the Kenai River, from January 1—December 31 a guide may not fish from a registered guide vessel while a client is present or within the guide’s control or responsibility, unless the guide is providing assistance to a client with a disability as defined in the Americans with Disabilities Act.


    As for "change of possession" the rules are posted right on the back cover of the regs. I guess most people just don't look at it. Here goes:

    5 AAC 75.010(a) states that no person may possess any unpreserved fish not legally taken by himself or herself, unless he or she has a statement signed by the person taking the fish stating the type of fish, number of fish, the location and date taken, and the sport fishing license number. See page 4, “Possession of sport-caught fish.”

    Then there is a form that must be filled out when you give people your unpreserved fish. How "black and white" can that be?

    Please don't ask me any questions regarding "interpretation" of these rules or the ethics of them. I don't think they are open to "interpretation" and I have absolutely no qualms with anyone catching their legal limit of fish and giving those fish to whomever they please. I don't think that is unethical at all.

    For the select few that get off "arguing" their point, have at it. I won't get involved.
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  2. #2
    Member Phish Finder's Avatar
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    I think the ethics come in when it's gratuity time. Do you accept gratuities for your services?

    Maybe you don't have any issues with it but I sure would. One could make the argument that gratuities increase when free fish is given to clients. That would mean that the fish is "sold" IMHO.

    What are everyone else's thoughts regarding gratuities and free fish?
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    Member AlaskaHippie's Avatar
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    Sorry, what I think that law means is.....


    <grin>

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  4. #4
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muttley Crew Fishing View Post
    I have absolutely no qualms with anyone catching their legal limit of fish and giving those fish to whomever they please. I don't think that is unethical at all.
    I must admit that I'm not comfortable with the practice. If I am hiring a guide to take me out, I would expect that the day and the guide's efforts are going to be devoted to helping me and the other paying fishermen have a good time and (ideally) catch fish. If the guide wants to fish, then suddenly I'm paying for him to catch his own fish. He's certainly allowed to do so, but on the time that was purchased by the paying customers? Not good business sense, at the very least. If he starts fishing with the stated purpose of catching fish that he will then "give" to the charter clients, then it starts to get into a gray area of those extra fish being part of the deal. Most charter clients wouldn't be OK with the captain just fishing for fun or for his own freezer. If that perception changes because they're going to see an extra fillet or two out of the deal, then it's almost as though the charter captain is in effect selling those fish.

    I am in no way suggesting that any 3A captain that does so is doing something illegal. I'm just not comfortable with the practice.

  5. #5

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    I feel the intent of letting a charter capt keep his limit is to fill HIS freezer. Not his clients fish box. I am not comfortable with it at all, thus my questioning in the other thread.

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    Clients pay for the opportunity to catch fish & to experience Alaska. Guides are on the water daily and usually have all the fish that they need in their freezer. Clients are not guaranteed any fish for their efforts. Many clients tip if they catch fish or not. Some clients need to be instructed on how to manage the gear, what a fish on the line feels like and how to fight the fish. If the guide can mange the clients needs and send them home with something that they haven't managed to catch themself then have at it. This is not abusive of the regs or the resource

  7. #7

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    I can't see a captain fishing at all. What I can see are clients fishing for his limit (and keeping/splitting it). Of course, it's illegal and unethical, but if a captain's limit is taken, I'm thinking that's how it's done. It would be pretty easy to pull off if the captain knew the customers. I'm not even remotely suggesting that's how Muttley and his forum buddies did it. I just think that under certain circumstances it might be happening. I have no proof, or even care that much, just my opinion.

  8. #8
    Member Frostbitten's Avatar
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    I don't have a problem with the guide fishing, as long as the clients still get all the attention they need/want. I've been on plenty of charters where the skipper/deckhands fished right along with us, and we all had a blast. That being said, I was in one situation where the skipper was so engrossed in his own activities (including fishing and taking a nap), that we were left to fend for ourselves as far as baiting, untangling lines and landing our own fish.

    The bottom line, in my opinion is that it is situational. Based on a range of variables, there are plenty of situations where it is perfectly OK for the skipper to fish right along with their clients...and probably just as many where it is not. If you don't trust your skipper to make the right call, what are you doing on their boat?

    For what it's worth, Dave (Muttley) is a class act and I assure you he will make the right call.
    Last edited by Frostbitten; 08-24-2010 at 10:06. Reason: typo

  9. #9
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akpolaris View Post
    This is not abusive of the regs or the resource
    It may not be abusive of the resource, but it certainly has an effect. Say a captain does this 100 times over the course of a summer. That is 200 fish that are removed from the overall population. Multiply this by the hundreds of charter boats targeting halibut, and you have the potential for a very large amount of fish being removed. Is it legal? Apparently. But if these fish are being caught simply to pad the fillet bags of paying clients, I'm not comfortable with it at all.

    Why was this law changed to allow charter crews to fish? I'm assuming that it was to allow them to fill their own freezers. Does anyone have a link to the proposal that was passed allowing this practice?

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    In the case of halibut it was always legal, a EO changed the written law, in case of Cook Inlet, the EO was not issued this year so the crew could catch fish. I am not sure the captain could fish but the crew could. I don't halibut fish, but that is how it was explained to me (if memory serves me) when I was in the F&G office getting a permit (not related to this discussion). So basically, an EO changed it so the crew couldn't fish, but the EO wasn't issued his year. Hopefully that makes sense.

  11. #11

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    I've been stewing on this all day.. With all the cuts that are going on: Moratoriums, IFQ's being slashed, SE down to 1 fish... I find it extremely irresponsible that this practice is going on. I've written my letter to NOAA. I've never been so glad to be out of that industry. How short sighted could those Captains be, to catch their limit and give the fish away to customers who already have a generous limit of 2 in 3A?

    It's obvious that some charter captains cannot regulate their own behavior for the good of the resource without an EO. Shame on them.

  12. #12

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    I`m trying to figure out how it is legal to transfer fish if they (client) have already met their daily bag limit.

    I share duties when with friends running the boat, tackle, gear, and all other prep/duties...can`t imagine when catering to a group that you really have an opportunity without taking something from the paying group in the way of fun, service, or other...just can`t wrap my lil brain around that one.

    Example, a friend (non-charter) wanted me to help with a group of 4 that he couldn`t possibly deal with on his own but he was upfront about the fact that he wasn`t going to fish and that I likely wouldn`t have the time considering the skill level of the people coming. I did in fact get a chance to fish but it was more of a presentation thing and then hand the rod off so they could feel for themselves where bottom was and felt like as well as the other variables.

    Guess what I`m saying is the people that pay to fish should fish...if the boat has limited and the group wants to C&R and the Capt. has the time and is willing I can see that as the very few reasons to be fishing.

    With the group that was fishing together (that prompted this thread) I could see the Capt. fishing without fear of taking something away from the clients just because the clients are who they are...but as the norm I would say it should be a no-no just simply out of respect for the clients that ultimately cloth/feed the operator with their purchase of the trip. Heck, if I was out with this particular operator with a couple of the friends that know what they`re doing I think I could have him fish and be fine with it...just not with the standard tourist/once trip a year type crowd.

    Maybe fishing without retention would be a better way???


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  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    I must admit that I'm not comfortable with the practice. If I am hiring a guide to take me out, I would expect that the day and the guide's efforts are going to be devoted to helping me and the other paying fishermen have a good time and (ideally) catch fish. If the guide wants to fish, then suddenly I'm paying for him to catch his own fish. He's certainly allowed to do so, but on the time that was purchased by the paying customers? Not good business sense, at the very least. If he starts fishing with the stated purpose of catching fish that he will then "give" to the charter clients, then it starts to get into a gray area of those extra fish being part of the deal. Most charter clients wouldn't be OK with the captain just fishing for fun or for his own freezer. If that perception changes because they're going to see an extra fillet or two out of the deal, then it's almost as though the charter captain is in effect selling those fish.

    I am in no way suggesting that any 3A captain that does so is doing something illegal. I'm just not comfortable with the practice.
    I am only going to say one thing here. Today marked my 55th charter this year. I have taken out well over 200 paying clients in that time period and not a single one has had anything negative to say about me fishing along with them and/or giving them some extra fish at the end of the day, and I'd really have to say that 100% of them are delighted about taking home some extra fish. I do it as a courtesy to my clients---not at their expense. I hope those of you that think it is unethical or wrong would fish with me because it would mean a lot less work for me. I do my best to keep my clients happy and not a single person out of over 200 so far have had anything negative to say about the practice. Guess they must be the un-vocal minority, huh?

    I sure do accept gratuities for my services and I'd be happy to provide those services without the trouble and expense I go to to catch extra fish for my clients. I don't catch those fish to make my gratuity bigger, I do it to provide the most quality fishing experience possible for someone that might not ever have that experience again in their lifetime. If someone doesn't want me to catch fish for them I'd be more than happy to oblige and I tell people that. So far not a single taker. Hmmmm. Guess they're just being polite.

    And none of the people (except repeat customers) know that my catching them fish is "part of the deal" and isn't part of the equation, so there is no "gray area" as you say Brian. I don't deal that way. Maybe other captains do, but I can't speak for them.

    For AK2AZ---Your brain must be a bit too small. Anyone can give the fish they legally catch to anyone they feel like giving it to. That's how it is legal. My clients do fish and a majority of them are "typical tourists" and every single one of them has expressed great delight at the fact that I can fish, too, and then give them that fish. Don't quite know how anyone could question that. Maybe some of you out there should experience what fishing with a real, genuine charter operator that cares about his clients is really like.
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    Member Phish Finder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muttley Crew Fishing View Post
    Maybe some of you out there should experience what fishing with a real, genuine charter operator that cares about his clients is really like.
    Muttley,
    I'm doing my absolute best to be as pleasant in this thread as I can. That being said, your final quote is a slap in the face to every charter operator that I've used in this state. I have been a client for a variety of reasons. My first trip was for the experience. The next few were to gain insight on how to catch halibut and kings on my own. Since moving to SC, the trips have been meat runs and friendly party runs.

    My post isn't a personal attack at all. I admire the fact that you view your method so highly.


    I have a fair share of experience in the charter business and would absolutely never say or support your final statement.

    As for fishing with clients and giving them extra fish, we'll have to see if that's legal next year. I'll be spending a bit of time with one of the NOAA lawyers tomorrow so I'll hit her up for her take on the subject. She may change my opinion. If so, I'll rescind my take.

    Cheers,
    Phish
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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    I don't take charters and expect to catch fish. Granted, I have only been on 5-6 charters. But I can only expect my guide to try to put me on fish. That is his job, nothing more. If he tries to do this and is professional and polite, he has done his job. When the time comes where I measure a guided fishing trip by the amount of fish in the cooler, I will get drunk and go play golf instead. The single most important thing for me when choosing a guide is personality. I spent a whole day on the Kasilof a few years ago in late May fishing for kings. Miserable weather, not a bite all day, the guide looked like he was going to have a stroke, so I rowed the last few miles for him. I tipped him very well for one reason. He knew when to talk and when to listen. He never told me how good it was yesterday. He got twice the tip I would have given some smug guy that helped me land a 50 lb king.


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  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phish Finder View Post
    Muttley,
    I'm doing my absolute best to be as pleasant in this thread as I can. That being said, your final quote is a slap in the face to every charter operator that I've used in this state. I have been a client for a variety of reasons. My first trip was for the experience. The next few were to gain insight on how to catch halibut and kings on my own. Since moving to SC, the trips have been meat runs and friendly party runs.

    My post isn't a personal attack at all. I admire the fact that you view your method so highly.


    I have a fair share of experience in the charter business and would absolutely never say or support your final statement.

    As for fishing with clients and giving them extra fish, we'll have to see if that's legal next year. I'll be spending a bit of time with one of the NOAA lawyers tomorrow so I'll hit her up for her take on the subject. She may change my opinion. If so, I'll rescind my take.

    Cheers,
    Phish
    Once again, someone taking what I say WAAAY out of context. I said "some of you" and that's all I meant "SOME" of you. Not ALL of you like you seem to think.

    If you have a charter operator that expects a gratuity, and especially is catching fish to expand that gratuity, then you need to find a new charter operator.

    Brian quoted what I said and then made examples that don't fit my quote. He apparently doesn't get the idea of a charter captain doing things like catching fish for his clients to be doing his clients a favor. He says it isn't "good business sense" to do that. Once again someone taking what I said totally out of context. If he, or you , or anyone here gets a charter captain that wants to fish for his own fun and enjoyment then he, you or anyone should find a new charter captain. Sorry for the slap in the face to those charter captains that want to do that. And, as I said, I don't make my catching fish and giving them to my clients part of the deal. It is always a surprise to them and not a SINGLE person I have taken out this year has had any objection to it---as I said. Why do so many people here have to only look at how devious people can possibly be instead of realizing there are scrupulous people out there that aren't just out there to take everything they possibly can from this world. My enjoyment is in giving and get really sick of the negativity that is expressed by the vocal minority on this forum.
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    Member Phish Finder's Avatar
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    I have never been on a boat with a Captain who held himself in such high regard. I've been on charters in several countries and never saw a Captain fish unless I asked for a demonstration of technique. I didn't think anybody was that pompous.

    Well, here you are

    Good luck in your business. Good to hear that your clients enjoy extra fish.
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  18. #18
    Member AlaskaHippie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muttley Crew Fishing View Post
    I have absolutely no qualms with anyone catching their legal limit of fish and giving those fish to whomever they please.
    .....Especially if it pads the tip, eh?

    It's mentalities like that which contribute to over harvested near shore fisheries, and subsequent reductions/restrictions in bag limits...

    "Give a man a fish, and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll feed himself for a lifetime."

    It's rare to see an individual say so much, and mean so little.......

    Thanks for giving away a resource for the sake of bobbin' the knob...
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  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaHippie View Post
    .....Especially if it pads the tip, eh?

    It's mentalities like that which contribute to over harvested near shore fisheries, and subsequent reductions/restrictions in bag limits...

    "Give a man a fish, and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll feed himself for a lifetime."

    It's rare to see an individual say so much, and mean so little.......

    Thanks for giving away a resource for the sake of bobbin' the knob...
    It's mentalities like yours and just a couple of other people here that turn people off to this forum. I get them on my boat all the time. All they talk about are the idiots that only have negative things to say when they post stuff and "beat dead horses" to death and don't know when to stop. Fortunately the un-vocal majority know who and why those idiots are.

    Like I said, I don't do it for the tip. Pretty simple.

    Thank you Phish. I have never known anyone that can put their foot so neatly in their mouth. You are the best at that. I LOVE to fish and I LOVE to get people into fish. That's all. I am an optimistic person and I try to bring that to my clients. Unfortunately every once in a while I get a negative no mind like you that ruins a day. My business is booming and with people that love to fish and love the experience. Fortunately those people are the vast majority and it makes my day when I can get them into some nice fish. Here are the fish we got today:

    41315_1421927476677_1487402054_31119530_3064121_n.jpg
    Last edited by Brian M; 08-25-2010 at 09:04. Reason: negative personal comment
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    I won't even bother to start at the begining and read all this garbadge, I've done it before in an effort to entertain myself by reading one posters rants. Normally they end quickly when someone pulls the plug and my prediction is, :"were not far off on this one".

    Anyone wanting to determine who's the antagonist need only go to the start and read the posters last line. Then compare his actions, which speak louder then his words. I'd suspect that would hold true on the water as well.

    Mike

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