Freezin shad and perch ??

Discussion in 'SOUTH CAROLINA LAKES / RESERVOIRS' started by foothills, Dec 12, 2006.

  1. foothills

    foothills New Member

    Messages:
    437
    State:
    South Carolina
    hey y'all...when freezin shad or perch...do you y'all freeze em whole or do you chunk em first?? what is the best way ?? also was wondering how long they last in the freezer before they get mushy when they thaw ??
     
  2. gadzooks

    gadzooks New Member

    Messages:
    1,532
    State:
    Kingwood, Tx (Houston)
    I lay down a layer of salt, a layer of baitfish, then a layer of salt and so on. Let it sit for a few hours, then freeze. The bait is tougher that way. I do them whole with guts intact. Kosher salt or non-iodized salt seems to work best, though iodized will work. I've done it once and it worked well, plan on doing it some more.
     

  3. FishBrew

    FishBrew New Member

    Messages:
    329
    State:
    North Texas
    With shad (all I use) I never try to freezer more than a few weeks worth. I leave them whole, no water. Nothing is better than fresh, but this time of year (depending on your location) finding shad and catching them can be tuff. I my experience, soft or otherwise, their catch rate really drops off after being froze for more than few weeks. Also, the bigger they are the better they tend to freeze. Leaving them whole without water (for no more than three weeks or so) works for me. There may be a way to keep the effectiveness longer but I try and rotate to keep the supply as fresh possible during the winter.
     
  4. catfishjohn

    catfishjohn New Member

    Messages:
    10,217
    State:
    Greenup Co. KY
    I froze abt 400 2-3" shad whole at the beginning of the summer in zip-loc baggies.Everytime I've used them they've not been too mushy but I haven't caught 1 fish with them.I've never had any luck with frozen bait,always do decent with fresh bait though.
     
  5. catfishcentral

    catfishcentral New Member

    Messages:
    1,497
    State:
    OK
    The best way I've found to preserve shad is first to throw them in a cooler as soon as their caught with a couple of frozen two liters. This keeps them cold until it's time to freeze them. The two liters won't melt like regular ice and dilute them when it comes to freezing. I've personally never had any luck with ziplocs....even getting as much air out as you can they will still turn to mush when you go to use them. Vaccum sealers work great for this and it's pretty hard to tell the difference between fresh caught and frozen using a sealer. I personally will never waste my time again freezing bait without a sealer. You will definatly see the difference in the freshness of your bait and the amount of catches verses the old way. Always freeze whole never cut.
     
  6. foothills

    foothills New Member

    Messages:
    437
    State:
    South Carolina
    has anybody ever tried to freeze perch or bream?? seems like they are a tougher fish than shad. do they last longer than shad in the deep freeze and do they produce the same amount of bites as fresh??
     
  7. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    I've frozen some of just about all of them. Shad and herring don't do as well as firmer fish like bream, and none of the frozen stuff catches like fresh, of course. After fishing with Roundhill and seeing how he keeps bait fresh for 2-3 days on ice, I started freezing mine this way: I usually keep the bait on ice in a plastic bag, don't let it lie in water if you can help it. I dry them good with paper towels, then place a dry towel in a vacuum bag, place the bait inside in a single layer, then vacuum seal (I usually make 2 seals). Done this way, the bait is almost like fresh, at least when used within a month or two, the longest I've done it. I froze some large shad that way once, but they didn't do nearly as well as the smaller ones.
     
  8. Pastor E

    Pastor E New Member

    Messages:
    3,194
    State:
    Beebe AR
    Thanks for the infromation:cool2:
     
  9. 4JS

    4JS Member

    Messages:
    220
    State:
    South Carolina
    I have salted bait and froze them in the past.
    This seemed to work well.
     
  10. Mr Phatkat

    Mr Phatkat New Member

    Messages:
    222
    State:
    Charleston sc
    I've frozen shad, herring, perch and menhadden before. The herring and shad seem to turn to mush if u dont use them soon. Im sure there's a scientist or two around here who will explain that you shouldnt pre-cut the bait because that exposes more surface of the bait which means more cells will swell and burst which in turn will cause the bait to "waterlog" or get soggy. But me personally bein the dummy i am, If i freeze it and intend to use it for cutbait, I cut it while its still live then freeze it in its own bloodwater. I am sure that the herring will go bad first, then the shad, then the menhadden, then the perch. But even soggy/frozen the menhadden will outfish them all, especially if u cut them live before freezing. I used frozen menhaden from last dec. back in may/june(wish id have frozen more actually).
     
  11. dinger66

    dinger66 New Member

    Messages:
    899
    State:
    north alabama
    i was told by a biologist to make a brine mix water +salt+sugar he told me to just work with about 2 table spoons of salt and sugar to a quart of water.soak 24 hours pat dry and freeze
     
  12. Dreadnaught

    Dreadnaught New Member

    Messages:
    5,444
    State:
    Henderson,Ky
    I have also tried many different methods and vacuum sealing them is the only way to go!!!
     
  13. mudkip

    mudkip New Member

    Messages:
    645
    State:
    SC
    White perch do real well frozen with no particular special procedure. Gizzard shad do pretty well if you freeze them in layers without just plopping them in a bag and freezing them as a wad. Threadfins are ok but not as firm as gizzard when thawed. Bluebacks just turn to mush the times I tried to use them. Not too sure how the skipjacks do.
     
  14. dinger66

    dinger66 New Member

    Messages:
    899
    State:
    north alabama
    bought a packer today gone give the vac packing a try just to see what happens.any more advice ?
     
  15. catfisher43

    catfisher43 New Member

    Messages:
    910
    State:
    missouri
    Thanks everyone for the information on vacuum sealing.
     
  16. mudkip

    mudkip New Member

    Messages:
    645
    State:
    SC
    Dinger

    If you plan to pack perch or gills be sure to clip the sharp fins before you vacuum seal them because when the sealer starts to create a lot of internal pressure the fins will penetrate the bag and ruin your vacuum. Otherwise the sealer works great for bait.
     
  17. dinger66

    dinger66 New Member

    Messages:
    899
    State:
    north alabama
    well have made a big mistake awhile back putting shad in my catfish pond on my home place.but either way they are seeming to raise very well .when i feed my catfish they are right there.
     
  18. catdaddy007

    catdaddy007 Member

    Messages:
    406
    State:
    SE Arkansas
    I freeze a lot of bait every year. When I start to fish in early spring finding enough bait to to run my lines is next to impossible.I freeze crawdads,brim,and catalpa worms.I cut the brim into chunks before freezing them in water.I also freeze the crawdads and worms in water.I have frozen shad only once, well I think it was more like 4 or 5 times.I left them whole and froze them in water also.When I went fishing I would thaw them out and refreeze them when I got home.After 4 or 5 times they started to get a little mushy and just a tad gaimy,kinda like kyarn!