Questions and Concerns Regarding Record Fish

Discussion in 'MISSOURI RIVERS TALK' started by RIVER-RAT, Aug 13, 2007.

  1. RIVER-RAT

    RIVER-RAT New Member

    Messages:
    3,128
    State:
    MO / MT
    Branden asked IMO a great question in his other thread "Us Westies Did Pretty Good


    MR T then followed up with the official response and left the following link;

    http://mdc.mo.gov/documents/fish/records/fishrec.pdf

    This left me with a concern,

    Doesn't this current "practice" of recognizing record fish subject these record size fish to an almost certain death? Where and how would one be able to keep a "record" fish alive? If I were lucky enough to catch what I thought was a "record" fish, I certainly would like to release the fish unharmed from the spot that I caught it. However I think it would also be neat to have my name in the record books. Is there anyway that the current practice of recognizing these fish can be ammended or changed? I would rather release the fish than see it die just so I could have my name in a book. I just don't want to see another incident like the Jim Pruitt fish. That IMO was a damn shame. That fish should still be swimming in the Mississippi.

    What do you, my fellow BOCer's, think? Would you sacrifice a "record" size fish to get your name in the books? If so why? Do you feel that there is any other way to recognize a "record" fish? Is there a way to safeguard the fish's life while you wait for the arrival of an "official"? I feel the current procedure puts the fish in emmanant danger of losing it's life. Shouldn't the Conservation Department safeguard the life of a "record" fish?

    Share your thought with me, and if you think I'm crazy, well.........just get in line with the rest of em!:eek:oooh::wink:
     
  2. spoonfish

    spoonfish New Member

    Messages:
    3,780
    State:
    Warsaw, Mo.
    Good point Bill.
    Its my understanding that you must have a conservation employee, agent or biologist to witness at a certified scale. Now another kicker is he or she must be a expert in indentifying that breed of fish. Shouldnt be a problem, hope most agents know the differances in cat fish but it could pop up when a state record is on line. Getting a agent to come out at 3 in the morning and finding a certified scale will be another.

    I guess if it came down to catching one a guy could keep it in the water, get a big stock tank and areator for the truck to transport and hope it didnt die until it could be returned. Dont agree with the whole pruitt money making to sell videos and other stuff thing.
     

  3. cubedweller

    cubedweller New Member

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    454
    State:
    MO
    I was wondering the same thing. And I'm sure I, like most -- thought "I'll cross that bridge when I come to it."

    I'd be the first to admit how difficult it would be to SAFELY release the next world record. I, too, would love to have my name next to "...caught the world record blue catfish!" instead of "...caught a really big fish that may or may not have been a world record."

    However, I would also be just as haunted if I let that fish die, knowing the fame and $ that it would bring me. It's not like I'd eat the thing. Tim Pruitt did what he felt was right, and I can't disagree -- that fish was supposed to make it to Cabela's alive for the enjoyment of all. But it didn't.

    I'd do a fair amount of soul searching if I were the lucky one to not only hook -- but also land -- the next world record catfish. Whatever decision I made, I just hope it would be one I could live with. The good thing is that I know I would have the respect of my brothers and sisters if I released it, regardless of whether it was weighed or witnessed by an DNR employee.

    The DNR/MDC (and/or a corporate partner) should be preparing for the next world record -- because you KNOW where it's going to come from.
     
  4. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Great Post, and Great Topic Bill. We have needed a discussion on this topic for quite some time.

    For Rod and Reel Methods, the current Missouri State Records are as follows

    1. Blue Catfish - 103 Pounds O Ounces
    Fish was caught in 1997, by Clarence Kerr, In the Missouri River

    2. Flathead Catfish - 77 Pounds 8 Ounces
    Fish was caught in 1997, by Darrell Hudspeth, In the Missouri River

    3. Channel Catfish - 34 Pounds 10 Ounces
    Fish was caught in 1976, by Gerald Sieben, In Lake Jacomo

    For Rod and Reel Methods, The Current World Records (as recognized by the IGFA International Game Fish Association

    1. Blue Catfish - 124 Pounds 0 Ounces
    Fish was caught in 2005, by Tim Pruitt, In the Mississippi River

    2. Flathead Catfish - 123 Pounds 0 Ounces
    Fish was caught in 1998, by Ken Paulie, Elk City Reservoir

    3. Channel Catfish - 58 Pounds 0 Ounces
    Fish was caught in 1964, by W.B. Whaley, In Santee Cooper Reservoir

    Heres a nice link to photos of the Current IGFA Record Fishes
    http://home.earthlink.net/~catfish_billy/id15.html

    Well theres the Records Folks. Now, Should any of our Fellow Missouri BOC'rs land a fish that beats any of these fish, The successfull RELEASE, or successfull Transportation of the fish, STARTS NOW, NOT when you catch it.

    PLAN AHEAD

    First and FOREMOST
    1. Have an adequate aereated livewell on your boat, capable of replenishing the water at a minimum of 500 gallons per minute. The livewell should be an adequate size such that the fish is not unduly stressed or bound up. If at all possible, an oxygen infusor should be used on the livewell as well. I'd recommend at the absolute minimum 50 gallons for the one fish. 100 or better would be preferred.

    2. DO NOT HANDLE THE FISH. While Tim Pruits desires to keep the fish alive were admirable, the monster was held dozens of times for photos, news crews, people just wanting to see it etc. The fish was under duress when it was placed into the livewell truck to go to Kansas City. It was trajically, too little to late. The fish should go from being unhooked, to the livewell in less than a minute or two. The fish under NO CIRCUMSTANCES should come out of the livewell at all until
    1. A certified Scale is ON THE PREMISES
    2. A Missouri Conservation Agent, or Fisheries BIologist is ON THE PREMISES.
    Then, remove the fish from the livewell, supporting it horizontally, and do everything at once, and do it quickly. The fish can be weighed, all pictures taken, and officially verified within a couple of minutes. Dont remove the fish from the water until EVERYTHING is in line and ready to go. Have all the cameras/video cameras ready for when it does come out of the water, you can get dozens and dozens of photos, and get the fish weighed on the certified scale.
    3. Without Further Adue, RELEASE THE FISH

    If your desires are to have the fish placed on public display, you MUST have a prior plan already established. If you dont have a plan, RELEASE is the only viable option
    For example, a plan should be in place with Cabelas (or whoever) so that the minute a record fish goes in the livewell, one cell phone call causes the ball to start rolling so that an appropriate aerated livewell truck will be on the premises in short order. (I have a 150 gallon tank on the ready should I ever be the lucky one.) I have a call into Cabelas as I type this to see what their thoughts are for transporting a record fish should one be caught in our region, and what we can do to have a preplan. I will post when I hear something

    In your boat, AT ALL TIMES, Have the following

    1. Your fishing license
    2. A list of phone numbers to include
    a. Several Local Conservation Agents
    b. The state fisheries Biologists
    c. The number to the nearest certified scale which can be at the ready within minutes. (good idea to have a couple backups as well)
    d. The numbers to local fishing buddies that can help coordinate everything and help you contact local officials. Believe me, you'll need some folks to help you out in the situation.

    I feel strongly that with prior planning, All fish can be weighed, photod, and released back to the water, and still receive submission as a record fish. With proper planning, the fish could be transported to an appropriate aquarium without undue stress as well, however a very sound plan should be in effect.

    Bottom Line, if you catch a record size fish there is going to be intense pressure from bystanders, friends, news media, etc all just wanting to SEE the fish. DONT DO IT. They will all get to see it when you pull it out of the water that One time for the official weighing. Stay calm, monitor the fish's condition closely at all times, but leave it in the water.

    Heres to hoping other members can add information so that all of us can have a good sound plan for the successfull release of a record fish. I sincerely believe by the end of 2008 one of our records is going to fall. I hope the fish will survive and grow bigger.

    Great Post Bill I'd Rep ya, but it wont let me. :wink:
     
  5. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    As a side note, the IGFA is in the process of establishing a "Catch and Release" World Records Category. This process will go by the fishes overall length I believe. The IGFA is THE AUTHORITY on submission of World Record Game Fishes, and they are ones you will send your 25 bucks, application, and fishing line sample too. :eek:oooh:
     
  6. cubedweller

    cubedweller New Member

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    454
    State:
    MO
    Well, if that doesn't qualify for the Library, I don't know what will...
    Fine job, Cuz. Or as we say, "Cuz, you ain't right." Reps most definitely earned for both Cuz and River-Rat.
     
  7. RIVER-RAT

    RIVER-RAT New Member

    Messages:
    3,128
    State:
    MO / MT
    Thanks for such a great response Cuz, I know I have your number in my phone and if I ever catch a record fish, I hope you'll be okay with me calling you! :wink:

    In fact I've thought about who I would call that would come out if such an occasion would arise. I would call you, Vince, and Gary, I know the three of you share the same amount of respect for these fish as I do and would assist another catfisherman in a time of need.

    I know that there are other BOCer's on here that feel the same way, I just haven't had the pleasure of meeting you yet! :wink:

    I'd call Kutter, but I don't think my *String* would reach the 'ol boy!:smile2:
     
  8. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

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    Missouri
    Cuz.. What are the names and numbers then so we all are not calling them?
     
  9. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Were all in this together Alex. Together, we CAN make a big difference. The BOC will give us the tools we need to necessitate change for the better. All of our goals should be To Preserve, To Promote, and To Perpetuate our great fishery.
     
  10. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    I will POST all the numbers I have when I get home guys. I'm in Charlotte right now, and all the numbers are in MY BOAT. :roll_eyes:
     
  11. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    If I'm home, you can bet your backside I'd be driving to help you. The same goes for any brother or sister.
     
  12. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

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    536
    State:
    Missouri
    What?? They are not preprogrammed into your cell phone... Shame on you!!
     
  13. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

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    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Prob shouldnt "spill the beans" yet. Ignore this post. LOL
     
  14. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
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    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    My cell phone is ruined. Using my wifes. :sad2: Got it wet the other night yanking them pigs outa the water Bill Dance Style while I was having my "roid rage" lmao
     
  15. cubedweller

    cubedweller New Member

    Messages:
    454
    State:
    MO
  16. RIVER-RAT

    RIVER-RAT New Member

    Messages:
    3,128
    State:
    MO / MT
    What a teaze!!!

    Enquiring minds NEED to know!

    It must be very exciting news. Attorney visits, it has to be!!
     
  17. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

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    536
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    Missouri
    Nice Catch Bill! I think we all have been.
     
  18. unclebill85

    unclebill85 New Member

    Messages:
    62
    State:
    Lee's Summit, Missouri
    and this form...
    http://www.mdc.mo.gov/documents/fish/records/fishrec.pdf


    Man, better get a file cabinet for your boat in order to keep all of this together!!
     
  19. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    guess the beans got spilled. LOL
     
  20. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

    Messages:
    536
    State:
    Missouri
    Cuz?? Running for President! Ill nominate you in that case..