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Thread: Rockfish release tool

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    Member Mel Roe's Avatar
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    Default Rockfish release tool

    A couple of years ago there was a guy on here that designed a tool to release rockfish by taking them back down to the bottom. Does anyone have information on how to contact him? It may have been CanCanCase? Thanks for the help

    Mel
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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    I thought it was a guy in Valdez that made the tool.

    A friend just keeps an extra rod with a 16 oz leadhead with a dulled debarbed hook on his boat. When he wants to send a rockfish back down, he just puts the dull hook in the fishes mouth and sends it down to the bottom. Said it works like a charm.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    I thought it was a guy in Valdez that made the tool.

    A friend just keeps an extra rod with a 16 oz leadhead with a dulled debarbed hook on his boat. When he wants to send a rockfish back down, he just puts the dull hook in the fishes mouth and sends it down to the bottom. Said it works like a charm.
    This thread has already been covered, but the method Paul H describes is preferred.
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    http://www.git-r-down.net/index.html I tried doing the venting thing and I am not sure it works. I looked at Ace's web site but it said that you should go to West Marine I looked at my 2010 West Marine catolog and did not see it. I may try the dull jig trick to see if it works. A lot of times we get the rock fish while fishing at 200ft with 3 to 4 pounds of weight and the current is really strong. Kind of wish they would change the boat limit rule to where you could give you extra rock fish to another who does not have one instead of throwing them back dead.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaindd View Post
    http://www.git-r-down.net/index.html I tried doing the venting thing and I am not sure it works. I looked at Ace's web site but it said that you should go to West Marine I looked at my 2010 West Marine catolog and did not see it. I may try the dull jig trick to see if it works. A lot of times we get the rock fish while fishing at 200ft with 3 to 4 pounds of weight and the current is really strong. Kind of wish they would change the boat limit rule to where you could give you extra rock fish to another who does not have one instead of throwing them back dead.
    It doesn't matter how deep you catch them, or how fast or slow you bring them up, all the damage occurs above the top 60 feet of the water column and you only need to get them back down below 60 feet for them to recover. The weighted crate method I described in this thread http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ckfish+release works great. The down side to the "git-r-down" device is that it requires hitting bottom to activate the release. As captaindd eluded to, that can be difficult at best when you're in extremely deep water. But again, all you need to do is get them below 60 feet; they will recover and return to the bottom on their own. The inverted/weighted jig can accomplish this, but I prefer not to have to punch more holes in the fish if I don't have to, and as I said in my other post, with the weighted crate method you don't have to stop fishing in order to facilitate the return of the rockfish in question. The crate method works great. It's fast and easy.
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    Dang, I just wrote up a long explaination and lost it. Oh well, here is the short version. I use the git-r-down and it works. Kinds of a PITA to setup and use, but not different than the weighted carton really, and it does take up less space. In general, it seems easier to just move the boat.
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    Member Mel Roe's Avatar
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    Thanks guys, the git-r-down was what I was looking for. I guess I will wait for west marine to get them in stock.

    Mel
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    Member Cliffhanger's Avatar
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    I use the git-r-down with my electric downrigger when it's 200 feet or less water. The 3-pound ball is so much easier to bring up when I don't have to manually crank it back up!

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    Member idakfisher's Avatar
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    What's wrong with "venting" with a syringe? It seems to work well and is recommended for small mouth bass.

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    Member Mel Roe's Avatar
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    idakfisher, first small mouth bass are not usually brought to the surface from 100-200 feet down and secondly there is a much higher mortality rate using the hypodermic needle. Here is the statistics that the inventor of the Git-r-down sent me. After the five year study, Cal State came back with a 97% recapture rate of fish released with it so the survival is VERY high. It may look good to see the fish swim away after being vented but if it dies later what is the purpose of doing anything? Here is a study done on the venting of rockfish?

    http://www.tarleton.edu/Faculty/higgins/462Article2.pdf
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    Hope this isn't beating a dead horse, but this was a project I had been planning since last season. Here's a photo of a very easy-to-make release tool. It's based on the one ADF&G was suggesting, and I think others have described.

    Attachment 45658

    As you can see, attach the barrel swivel to your main line. You can adjust the size of the weight for the depth you are trying to hit for release. If you want to shrink the whole rig, just put the weight right on the split ring without the corkscrew in the mix. Note the barb has been filed off the hook (a very large hook from B&J - that's a 3-lb cod weight).

    I plan to have this rig set up on a separate rod, just waiting to be put into action, to save time rerigging in order to release rockfish as healthy as possible.

    Hook the fish through the bottom jaw. Drop the whole rig so it falls with the fish head down; I don't think it could happen any other way. Drop it fast like you are dropping a bait to the bottom. When you either feel the fish start "fighting" or hit bottom, give a quick yank on your rod tip like you are setting a hook - this should yank the hook out of the rockfish's mouth. Retrieve, put the rig aside, and get back to fishing with as clear a conscience as possible!

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    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    Link doesn't work, Mort.
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    Quote Originally Posted by idakfisher View Post
    What's wrong with "venting" with a syringe? It seems to work well and is recommended for small mouth bass.
    Most fish that are vented die of an infection. It makes you feel good to see them swim away but they wind up dying. Better off using one of the tools that takes the fish back down and releases it at depth. Dropping a fish down 34ft cuts the size of the air bladder in half. Dropping it down 68ft cuts it in half again. You also do not risk infection like a vented fish would

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    Member Roger's Avatar
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    Anybody know if West marine has them back in stock ?
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  16. #16
    Member Mel Roe's Avatar
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    Hi Roger, they emailed me and said March.

    Mel
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  17. #17
    Member Mort's Avatar
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    How about this?

    P2130001.JPG

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    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mort View Post
    How about this?

    P2130001.JPG
    That works! Thanks.
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    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
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    my buddy rigged up a rockfish realease tool like the one Mort did, but with a longer leader between weight and hook. He used is well but when I (Mr. fumble fingers) tried it, about half the time the weight would slip from a hand or the gunnel when the fish wiggled, and the hook went into my hand...

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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaindd View Post
    http://www.git-r-down.net/index.html I tried doing the venting thing and I am not sure it works. I looked at Ace's web site but it said that you should go to West Marine I looked at my 2010 West Marine catolog and did not see it. I may try the dull jig trick to see if it works. A lot of times we get the rock fish while fishing at 200ft with 3 to 4 pounds of weight and the current is really strong. Kind of wish they would change the boat limit rule to where you could give you extra rock fish to another who does not have one instead of throwing them back dead.
    I hate throwing rockies back too when you know they are going to die. This one sure did not go to waste, eagle grabbed it and was gone.
    I stop fishing areas that produce Rockies for that very reason. That and they live an extremely long time. This one was over 30 years old according to the Biologist that checked it at the dock.





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