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Hey guys a lot of you know me on here and I just got back from a skipjack run and have found a gold mine. I can usually round up enough skippies at pickwick dam but for the last 2 years it been really hard to keep enough just to fish. Iv been having to stretch my stash but today I did something I never though I would I drove 2 hours to get 100 fresh caught today nice size skipjack. A guy told me about this old boy and I contacted him and put my order in he told me last night get reals to drive down to Rogersville, Alabama 86 miles from my house. I got down there around 530 this afternoon and he had 108 very nice size skipjack heck he had them stacked on there back the way they should be stored when on ice to prevent there Blood and juices to settle in there belly with ice between them and layered. $3 each. Now that may sound a little high but catching skipjack nowadays is almost impossible around here except in the spring. I spend more in the last month chasing them in gas, gear and catfishing time for two darn old skipjack. He also has vacuum sealed skipjack they are $4 each and they are vacuum sealed one per pack. This guy is the real deal. Anyone want to get in touch with him just holler. Man o man now I can quit worrying about trophy cat bait till spring those 100 will last me till spring and I won't have to worry.
 

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Steven from Georgia
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Its good for now chuck,
Unfortunately it seems they are disappearing everywhere. People are using them faster than they can reproduce.

Unless states take action to limit / ban the sale of them. There wont be enough to worry with.

The good news is. Ive caught lots of cats in the Tenn. river. Not a single one on skipjack. The eat shad, suckers, white bass and bream, just fine it seems to me.
 

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Thanks for the kind words Chuck. It was very nice meeting you and look forward to joining up on a fishin' trip sometime soon!
 

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I live in Illinois and own a cabin just off the Tennessee near Savannah Tn. After the 6 hour drive to get there , it usually takes me half a day to get enough bait to fish for a full day. My main problem is keeping the skipjacks fresh enough to fish with for any length of time. Best way I have found so far is to add ice-cream salt to a cooler of ice while catching the skips , bury them belly down in the salt ice mix use what you can that day then vacuum seal and freeze the rest. But , it is hard to beat a same day caught skipjack. My number 2 bait is a live bream or bluegill , keep them in a livewell as long as possible , when they die , bury them in the ice and use them cut in half for blues and once in a while a flathead.
 

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First there is nothing wrong with the way you are doing it now. But you would be better not freezing it if you are going to use it within three days. Just keeping it on ice should be the better way for that length go time.

I have gone to Tennessee on numerous occasions to catch skip and bring home to freeze. I freeze them because they will be used through out the year. I use the Steve Douglas method when catching skip to be frozen.

Much like you, I use ice and salt but I add some water to make a slurry. Then I make sure the skip are put in it as soon as possible and pushed down into the slurry. When I am ready to bring them home, a 5 hour drive, I drain the water out of the cooler and add more ice and salt. As soon as they are home, rinse them, pat them dry and either vacuum seal them or wrap them individually, tightly in a plastic wrap. Then into the deep freeze.

Now, if you are going to use them within two full days, you would be better to keep them out of the water but surrounded by ice. Some will even put them in plastic bags to keep them out of the water. Just the same as taking food on a camping trip. Kept cold it will last two to three days. Only freeze those you plan to keep longer than that.

That would be my advice.

Good luck.
 
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