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Ed Buric

interesting article

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Got it! Sounds reasonable. Probably will cramp the style of many C&R anglers who thought they were doing the right thing. I guess if we all were that concerned with fish, we wouldn't hook them in the face and take them out of the water, and sometimes eat them.

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one of the main reasons for catch and release is "easy on the fish!", not only releasing them but not roughing them up or stressing them in the process. the lip grip for bass was being dicouraged in the 70's. i assumed responsible fishermen who were releasing fish knew this. timothy troester

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Thanks for posting this Ed. I've been lipping bass for years and hope I haven't caused too many injuries or worse.. I'm sure Eugene will be happy you got this out - he's militant about this!

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It's a well written article. It's certainly not a good thing to hold a bass by its bottom lip with the fish at any kind of horizontal angle without supporting the body with a wet 2nd hand. I am guilty of the straight one hand vertical hold 1,000's of times You'll find plenty of visual evidence if you look back at fishing reports on this and many other fishing sights. It does say the one hand vertical hold is OK on smaller fish less than 3 pounds. I would estimate 98% of the smallmouth I catch are less than 3 pounds.

 

The ISA has always been good at educating other anglers about conservation issues like fish handling. It can seem militant at times but its just because some of the members are very passionate about the sport. There have been other discussions beyond fish handling like: the use of barbless hooks, not holding fish out of the water for long periods of time during warm temps, not fighting fish to complete exhaution with ultra-light gear, not pulling males out from guarding nests putting them in livewells and releasing them at the other end of a lake, and use of circle hooks with live bait.

 

There is a lot more we can do in addition to properly holding a bass that can contribute to the conservation of our sport.

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Good article. Some hunters photo hunt, that is, take pictures instead of shooting the animal. There's always a better way.

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I think the picture in the article showing the fishes mouth being forced wide open misrepresents the way a fish is actually gripped for a vertical pic.That kind of grip implies that the fish is about to be lifted from the water in a horizontal plane for a horizontally held singlehanded pic which should never be employed rather than the vertical plane that is used use for a singlehanded vertical pic which does not force the mouth that wide open.I'm sure steelhead guides would take issue with this article having always used boca grips to vertically lift fish much heavier than 3lbs with little or no harm.

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