Tournament mortality question ?

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bassrman
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Tournament mortality question ?

Postby bassrman » Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:41 am

I notice every year during the warm weather months' the mortality rate after tournament weigh ins ' goes up ' everybody chimes in with opinions & ideas,blame game & finger pointing goes on !... I just wonder how a 'say 3% mortality rate after a large tournament harms the fishery ' compared to a tournament during the spawn' when those fish are moved miles from there beds' and will never return to complete that cycle ' I know that those fish may spawn again somwhere else ? but the spawn seems to be a popular time of year for back to back tourneys 'I wonder if the DFW biologist's have ever done a study on this ?

drew
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby drew » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:51 am

IMO it has no affect on the lb/acre of the fishery. If the numbers go down then the average weight goes up.

mark poulson
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby mark poulson » Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:39 am

I was weighmaster for Mike Iljin's AC Castaic trail for a lot of years, and here's my take:
I see it as an anglers issue, first and foremost.
There are things that a tourney organization can require or provide, but, in the last analysis, it's up to the anglers to protect the fish.
Having big fish kills after tournaments, even if it's a low percentage of the overall fish catch, puts pressure on DWF to further restrict tournaments on our lakes, and no one wants more restrictions, and less tournaments.
There are two major issues, in terms of fish mortality, that I see as totally in the anglers' control:

1. Not needling your fish before weighin, because you don't want to take the chance of it dying, is one.

Fish floating in a livewell all day with an over inflated swim bladder are doomed, because the pressure from the swim bladder causes damage to it's internal organs after a short period of time. Learn to needle your fish, and more than once during the day if needed.

2. Not keeping your livewell running constantly, once you put fish in it, is the other.

Fish that are kept in a livewell with the intermittent auto setting on the livewell instead of constant on, to keep fresh water in the livewell all the time, are stressed, big time, even with livewell treatments. The oxygen levels go up and down as the pump cycles on and off, and the levels of ammonia and other chemical byproducts fish discharge into the livewell's water build to high levels in a livewell with a limit of fish in it. Use a deep cycle battery for your cranking battery, and you'll have plenty of juice to run your electronics and your livewells all day. In a pinch, if your cranking battery does go down, the newer boats have a switch so you can jump your cranking battery from your TM batteries. For those of us with older boats, carry some kind of jumper cables so you can do it yourself.

If I had to pick one thing above the others, I'd say, more than anything else, having the livewell run all the time is the single easiest and most effective way to keep fish alive. Clean, oxygenated water, no matter what temperature, will keep bass alive. Heck, they live in 90+ degree water down south, as long as there's enough oxygen.
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milehi
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby milehi » Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:54 am

swinging these fish in, wacking them against the consoles, letting em flop around around on the carpet can't help. what ever happened to the slime coat issue? major league fishing land practices should be a given

Oldschool
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby Oldschool » Fri Jun 26, 2015 10:15 am

What over stresses and eventually kills bass kept in a live well for several hours is low DO levels and thermal shock, all the other stuff is minor.
IF tournament anglers were required to monitor DO levels, the problem would be managed.
Lakes that are deep rocky structured and wind blown reservoirs like we have in California rarely have water temps that exceed 80 degrees, a few feet below the surface were bass live. Livewells take low DO warm water from the lakes surface, that is the problem during the summer and summer nights. If the DO levels are above 7 mg/L, the livewells water kept in the mid 70's, bass do not suffer stress. It's also rare for bass to be deeper in the summer than the thermocline depth, no reason to poke holes in bass coming out of water less than 40 feet.
Bass rolling over from stress during the summer, don't need more stress.
So, how many tournament anglers use a DO meter or a livewells thermometer during summer derbies?
Why not???
The Clear Lake Open event that triggered this topic had far more than 3% mortality rate, may have been near 20%, lots of floating big bass isn't good PR for tournaments. Clear Lake is a natural big shallow body of water, not a typical California lake. I don't have a dog in this hunt, rarely tournament fish, however do know how to handle big bass properly.
Tom

Robb R
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby Robb R » Fri Jun 26, 2015 12:09 pm

At the Lake of the Woods up in the North , (Minnesota and Ontario ?) . The Canadian side did a study of the effect on smallmouth bass pressure during the spawn . Eventually , on the Canadian side , they banned tournament fishing during the spawning timeframe . The results became obvious . The Canadian side of the water eventually produced larger numbers and larger smallies . Not sure if the American side of the water changed rules , but overall , the fish were far better off not getting caught , released miles away from the primary spawning grounds at the peak time.
There is no chance that happens locally . The overall fishing pressure and C & R practices during spawn need more attention from everybody .
Personally , I never bed fish . With all the water fluctuation we have and to many "bucket" fisherman taking shots at and easy meal ----just makes my favorite lakes that much tougher to produce every year .
Tight lines ,
Robb

mark poulson
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby mark poulson » Fri Jun 26, 2015 1:26 pm

milehi wrote:swinging these fish in, wacking them against the consoles, letting em flop around around on the carpet can't help. what ever happened to the slime coat issue? major league fishing land practices should be a given


I have been guilty in the past of landing fish on the carpet, particularly gut hooked and deep hooked fish, which require me to put on my glasses and use both hands to get the hook out.
That's why now I keep one of those yellow microfiber towels tucked into the front of my TM pedal recess. When I get to my first spot, I dip it in the lake and spread it out on the deck just behind where I stand when I'm fishing, so I have a cool, wet surface to land them on, and to do my surgery.
Another thing that stresses fish is if you put them down on a metal golden rule that's been out in the sun. It will always be hotter than the air around it, because the metal absorbs and retains heat, and the hot metal is a shock to the fish. Keep the rule out of the sun while you fish, and it's much easier on the fish.
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g-man
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby g-man » Fri Jun 26, 2015 7:15 pm

I agree with everything Mark said!

And if you do happen to leave the ruler in the sun it doesn't take a scientist to know its hot when you grab it. Dip that sh@t in the water...


Every bed fish I've ever caught has swam free to breed again. Bed fishing does not cause population drops, anglers carelessness does. The plain and simple answer is take care of YOUR fish!
100% LL

bassrman
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby bassrman » Sun Jun 28, 2015 5:21 pm

What happens to the Bass eggs and/or Fry ' when the bed fish is taken miles away to wiegh in " never to return to that particular bed again ?

mark poulson
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby mark poulson » Mon Jun 29, 2015 5:15 am

bassrman wrote:What happens to the Bass eggs and/or Fry ' when the bed fish is taken miles away to wiegh in " never to return to that particular bed again ?


Don't start bringing common sense into this discussion! :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Kwin
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby Kwin » Mon Jun 29, 2015 10:10 am

https://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FileHandler.ashx ... 4&inline=1

The address/link above is of a study completed in 2013. If barotrauma isn't an issue tournament mortalities should be low, this study averaged 2%. Needled/deflated fish averaged 15% mortality and non-needled averaged 32%. This was in winter with 57-62 degree water and during pre-spawn when environmental and non-barotrauma related biological stress is lower. Bottom line is try no to fish deep and take care of the fish caught and retained and most of them will make it.

Oldschool
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby Oldschool » Mon Jun 29, 2015 2:57 pm

DVL is an interesting lake with a very deep population of FLMB, good place to a study of this type.
The depth noted was about 30 to 60 feet, surface temps 57 to 62 degrees and as noted late winter to pre spawn bass. Warm livewell temps and low DO levels having minimal impact on mortality rates.
Fizzing the bass was successful under these conditions.
Summer warm water period with very low DO levels is a different problem. Has the DFW performed mortality rates during warm water summer period mortality rates?
The OP's original question regarding egg and bass fry mortality due to bed fishing happens, female bass rarely lay all their eggs in 1 bed, one reason they are very successful spawners. The size of the lake, the water clarity and tournament fishing pressure will dictate the harm to the fishery from bed fishing. Big lakes with poor visibility bed fishing has little impact. Small clear water lakes with high bed fishing pressure can impact the recruitment success. Most of SoCals small lakes have sanctuary areas set aside for spawning. Our biggest problem is water draw down during the spawn that can nearly wipe out a year class!
Tom

kopper_bass
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby kopper_bass » Mon Jun 29, 2015 5:40 pm

So, I'm not a big fan of tournaments while bed fishing, and I'm not supporting or condoning it, but I dont think its accurate to assume that bass dont return to their location, even beyond bedding times.

I have been in situations while trying to get that big female, whereby we have caught the male over and over, so we took that thing all the way across the lake (clear lake, lower arm) and yet that dang fish was back within minutes (yes, we know it was the same fish). was just amazing.

A while back there was a also a great article about bass travels, and how/if a bass released far from where it was taken ever gets back to its original location. The article was trying to help de-mistify this exact type question.

The article talked about how they tagged many fish with radios and followed their movement. Findings (as I remember) were as follows:
- 15-20% of bass will travel long distances and return to their original location within 24-48hrs of release.
- another 25-30% return to their original location, within a week.
- 25% go to a new location, other than their original location or their release location.
- 20-25% stay at their release location.

It was quite enlightening.
Point here is don't just assume that because you caught a fish and took it for a ride, you have displaced that fish. it can and will find its way home; they have proven it.

Kopper_Bass
Nobody remembers who came in 2nd place. Fish Hard - Play Hard!

bassrman
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby bassrman » Mon Jun 29, 2015 6:34 pm

By then ' egg & fry eating Predators' have wiped out that bed ! before the fish returns ?....

Robb R
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby Robb R » Mon Jun 29, 2015 8:53 pm

Kopper bass ,
I am not sure I agree with your comment , even your recital of the "study" ( which I remember reading the same article )
indicates 45-50% of the bass do not return ? If that's true ----removing bass from a spawning location affects the spawn success .
I don't fish tournaments and I don't bed fish . It would seem to me that the tournament organizations and tournament fisherman need to come up with a significantly better approach to protecting our resources or bare the consequences of the liberal cry babies that proliferate our state .
Robb

mark poulson
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby mark poulson » Tue Jun 30, 2015 5:11 am

The ideal for tournaments during the spawn, and any other time for that matter, would be digital scales connected to cellphones and GoPro, so each fish could be weighed and photographed on the scale, and then released at the spot it was caught.
I'm sure that technology is coming.
Similar to the MLF deal, but without the marshals.
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Oldschool
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Re: Tournament mortality question ?

Postby Oldschool » Tue Jun 30, 2015 7:46 am

The only bass that will return to a bed site is the small male bass, most tournament anglers are not targeting small bass during the spawn cycle. The female lays eggs and departs within a few hours, may return in a week or so to finish laying eggs, usually a different bed site. The male guards the nest site.I am not a proponent of bed fishing, but you catch big staged females during the spawn cycle regardless of you target beds or not.
This argument goes around and around, the studies are not conclusive one way or the other.
When I started bass fishing in SoCal we had closed seasons, fishing started May 1st for all fresh water species including bass. Don't think you want to return to closed seasons!
Getting tournament anglers with money on the line to be honest enough to weigh their own bass, record the weight and release the bass only works if there is a honest referee. MlF is a good concept for a few anglers.
Tom


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