Fresh Frozen Shad?

Discussion in 'Shad Talk' started by handsomejack, Aug 13, 2008.

  1. handsomejack

    handsomejack New Member

    Messages:
    20
    State:
    Ilinois
    I'm very new at this and could use some advise.
    When shad are available does anyone freeze them for later use?
    If so, is there any special way of preparing them for fishing?
    I have some spread out on cookie sheets freezing and plan to vacuum bag them after they freeze. Will they still be good bait or am I just wasting my time and smelling up the freezer?
     
  2. Boomer

    Boomer New Member

    Messages:
    1,037
    State:
    Oklahoma
    I freeze them in water, they wont be soft, but about the same as you put them in the water.

    I also freeze my fillets the same way, no freezer burn.
     

  3. switchback

    switchback New Member

    Messages:
    212
    State:
    Illinois
    i wouldnt vacum seal them it will suck the oils out of the shad that and the guts is all the catfish are after. I freeze them when i get them because i dont have a throw net. But i seem to have pretty much the same luck with fresh or frozen.
     
  4. brother hilljack

    brother hilljack New Member

    Messages:
    7,305
    State:
    Shelbyville, TN
    I have good luck with them fresh or frozen. I also vacuum seal
     
  5. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    As you can see, some folks do quite well with frozen shad, but I've had such poor results that I won't even give them space in the freezer. Now, skipjack are a completely different matter; they freeze great! My advice is for you to freeze a relatively small amount of shad, then test it against some fresh shad. See firsthand whether or not it works for you. (This is a great example of the fact that what works great for one person in one situation doesn't work at all for someone else in a different situation...or location.)
     
  6. Blakemo

    Blakemo New Member

    Messages:
    94
    State:
    Oklahoma
    Any other advice on how to freeze them?
     
  7. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    Just my impression, but it seems to me that a pretty high percentage of the folks having luck with frozen shad are vacuum sealing them.
     
  8. whisker maniac

    whisker maniac New Member

    Messages:
    2,712
    State:
    arkansas
    People freeze shad differently all the time. You will just have to experiment and decide what works best for you but, I don't think I would have froze them on the cookie sheet first then vacuum seal them. What I would have done is individaully and tightly wrapped them in saran wrap and then vacuum sealed them right away. This would keep the vacuum sealer from pulling out the juices and scents from the shad.

    I don't have a vacuum sealer so I wrap mine individually and then put them in ziplok bags and freeze them. This enables me to just take one out of the bag at a time to use to fish with if I'm not going to have the time to be out there very long.
     
  9. massa_jorge

    massa_jorge New Member

    Messages:
    2,137
    State:
    TEXAS
    based on the responses i have seen for the past couple years, frozen shad work better some places than others. they work great for me, and i vacuum seal them. after i fill a bag, i roll up napkins or paper towels in the mouth of the bag, so the slime doesn't prevent a good seal. also, you don't want to jam pack a bag full of shad. i freeze them no more than two shad wide in the bag. i also 'cold thaw' them in the fridge before a trip, and keep them cold during the trip in a cooler. i have been trying fresh vs. frozen for two years and always had the same results- good ones!
     
  10. Shimano

    Shimano New Member

    Messages:
    195
    State:
    North Carolina
    The thing to do is vacuum seal them while they are still kicking instead of after freezing them because that keeps that freezer smell off them and the fresh smell in. I have never seen the guts get sucked out from vacuum sealing them. Good luck.

    Shane
     
  11. catman from owensboro

    catman from owensboro New Member

    Messages:
    569
    State:
    ky
    don't like frozen shad they rot out to quick
     
  12. PhattyB

    PhattyB New Member

    Messages:
    10
    State:
    West Virginia
    I freeze some because sometimes, desperate times call for desperate measures. I have the good graces of living very close to the river where I catch shad. If I can't catch some fresh ones like I usually do 90% of the time, I will go home and get them out of the freezer.
     
  13. 1mickymoo

    1mickymoo New Member

    Messages:
    378
    State:
    Edgerton, Kansas
    I keep a spot in the freezer where I can lay them flat in a single layer so they will freeze quickly. If they are kept on ice i've never had them get mushy on me. I do , however, prefer live, so if the shad are available I'm using live, but I have caught most of my fish on frozen, I guess it's the coninience.
     
  14. Catfish Jaw

    Catfish Jaw New Member

    Messages:
    140
    State:
    Mississippi
    Sometimes i go snagging, catch and keep some shad. then later I go use them.
     
  15. dust777man

    dust777man New Member

    Messages:
    536
    State:
    SC
    I have had good luck with them. I sometimes freeze in water or just wrap them good before freezing.
     
  16. Fishmaster1203

    Fishmaster1203 New Member

    Messages:
    3,603
    State:
    PA
    Frozen good. Fresh better. :wink:
     
  17. hawk

    hawk New Member

    Messages:
    71
    State:
    kenton ohio
    fresh shad are good but the best luck i've had is with 3 or 4 gizzard shad that have been frozen a week or so and the get this yellow slimy coating after 4 or 5 days in the freezer. that stuff drive the cats nuts. I just put them in a freezer bag and put them in my garage freezer and take them out when i need a few. But freeze them in small quanities per bag cause once they thaw they turn into mush if you try and refreeze them .