Catfish help - How do you keep a catfish from turning white after it dies?

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by matt, Feb 16, 2006.

  1. matt

    matt New Member

    Anderson SC
    how do you keep a catfish from turning white after he or she dies ????
  2. crazy

    crazy New Member

    Kansas CIty, MO
    Putting them on ice right away might keep them from turning colors. All dead things though are going to turn colors unless you happen to cary a can of spray paint.

  3. Patmansc

    Patmansc Well-Known Member

    Greer, SC
    Pat Chaney
    I agree! Put your fish on ice as soon as possible, especially in hot weather :)
  4. bill_gfish

    bill_gfish New Member

    st. marys, oh
    If you are talking about keeping and eating then the ice will do the trick. If you are talking about keeping a fish in color for taxidermy work I would keep it on ice and not worry about the color much as it is done with paint to the best of my knowledge. Take several pictures of all angles and take it with you to get it stuffed. Or better yet take measurements and pictures release said fish and order an artificial mount. I would say the color change is due to lack of oxygenated blood flow through the tissues that keep the pigment up.
  5. beeheck

    beeheck New Member

    Iowa / Missouri
    Putting your fish on ice is the best idea but I'll add that my brother-in-law does what he calls a thumb gut, he whacks the catfish over the head a couple times and then slits the belly and using his thumb, he runs it from the head to the tail along the spinal column and most of the guts, inners and stuff just fall out into the water. Bigger fish, more fingers. He then puts the fish on ice and I thank him for chumming the water for me. Since we are at times out overnight it would be a long time before he gets to clean the fish and this way the innards don't have a chance of tainting the taste.
  6. Itch2Scratch

    Itch2Scratch New Member

    Ivy Bend on LOZ, Missouri
    Hi Matt, the best thing to concentrate on keeping them alive. If your a using a stringer, cut a slit behind the bottom lip to run the stringer through there rather than damaging the gills. If you fish from a dock or boat and do not have a live well you can make one using two laundry baskets strapped together top to top and cut a hole in the bottom of the top one to put the fish in. We use one on the dock and float it using those styrofoam noodles. Keeps them alive for days if ya need it.;)
  7. kspor

    kspor New Member

    Wichita Kansas
    I would have to say that I have always had them lighten. Ice does help. I would take lost of pictures and then take more. the better the taxidermists picture of your trophy the more it will look like what you caught.:)

    ASASIN New Member

    Lawson Missouri
    Cut the tails and bleed them out. Put them on ice ASAP. God bless.
  9. WylieCat

    WylieCat Well-Known Member

    Color changes in all fish are caused by hormone changes due to stress, lack of oxygen, etc.

    Hormone levels are what regulate the color in fish. You see the same thing happen in ocean fish like the Dolphin; they are brilliantly colored and if they are kept out of the water for too long the color will "drain out" as the hormone levels cecrease. The same thing happens to White Crappie during spawning and it causes them to turn as dark as a Black Crappie.

    If you ever see a fish that is at a taxidermists shop they are almost gray. The finished product has to be painted to add back in the natural color.

    The bottom line is that it does not hurt a thing. The fish is stil edible.
  10. SangamonCatKiller

    SangamonCatKiller New Member

    central illinois
    Matt, you don't. Any living creature when dead will turn pale. Ice may keep enogh cells alive to provide some coloration but, it wouldn't last long. You best bet is to keep them alive as long as possible. If this is for a mount, I would just take an over abundant amount of pictures with good measuremens.