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wingnut38

Dead eyes

19 posts in this topic

This weekend I saw six different walleyes all over 20" floating. This is my first year on Mille Lacs. Is this normal? Do a lot of the realesed fish die like that?

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I also saw 2 yesterday, one had to have been in the 27-29" range, the other was over 20" also. This is a very good question.

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Unfortunatly this is very common as summer wears on, so much so that the DNR includes the "mortality" rate in it's alloted poundage quota. Try to land your fish as quick as possible,keep it in the water if possible,and NEVER dig a deep hook out-cut the line.

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Unfortunately there are more and more of the fish at this time of the year that don't make a second trip, as the water warms people have to remember to fight the fish quick, have the camera ready and snap a picture or return the fish quick, they can't handle being caught, dropped three times on the bottom of the boat, and waiting while 6 pictures are taken- get rid of them quick!

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last year at this time there was a lot more visible dead kill. A little info on your landing nets, I see there are a few using rubber nets which work great. Then there are the people with the old school nets which are basically gill nets. Your net gets caught behing the gills tears them up and you think you have a good release when your net just killed them. Rubber nets please. If not rubber use tight webbed nets.

Good luck

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Don't handle the fish if you don't plan on eating it. Release it in the water, don't need to take it out of the water and take a bunch of pic's. We were fishing and the boat next to us would use a landing net on every fish, take them out of the water, drop them while taken too many pic's and release them. You sure don't need to take a pic of every fish you catch like they did.

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This topic comes up every year at this time. Just wait 'til the water warms and the tulibee start to die. Many people assume them to be walleye. The dead walleye are factored in as part of the angler kill portion of the walleye take on Mille Lacs. They factor in for the setting of the keeper slots.

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Quote:

Unfortunatly this is very common as summer wears on, so much so that the DNR includes the "mortality" rate in it's alloted poundage quota. Try to land your fish as quick as possible,keep it in the water if possible,and NEVER dig a deep hook out-cut the line.


Land them quick, but also remember, you are pulling these fish from depths in excess of 30 feet that can be hard on them as well.

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Quote:

Unfortunatly this is very common as summer wears on, so much so that the DNR includes the "mortality" rate in it's alloted poundage quota. Try to land your fish as quick as possible,keep it in the water if possible,and NEVER dig a deep hook out-cut the line.


This is a good post and great answers. I'd like to see a sticky on this subject.

Answers like: How to net them, how to hold them, Catch Photo Release, when to cut the line, and basic info to keep the mortality rate down! Do people even know that the hook will dissolve and it it is better to leave the hook in?

I'm thinking this would be good for the new comers and out of towner's coming to MN for walleye. This info is posted all over the internet, and it would only help our fisheries.

Thanks,

Jon

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As far as when to cut the line. I cut the line if the fish isn't caught in the mouth area. If the fish has the hook swallowed, and you either can't see it at all, or only see the eye of the hook, cut the line.

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I've always wondered how long it takes for a hook to dissolve? Anyone know?

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I believe it depends on the material its made out of. You got all those different metals and such.

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Quote:

Try to land your fish as quick as possible


Just wanted to clarify this statement. Not sure if he was talking about the net or from the hook set.

Fight the fish, but bring it up slowly so they can adjust to the pressure of coming up from 30-34', other wise their air sack will rupture. Once the fish is to the surface, then work quickly to get her back in.

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I've always wondered how long it takes for a hook to dissolve? Anyone know?


Stainless hooks = basically never

Other metals like bronze, cadmium alloys etc, they say anywhere from 1-2 weeks to several months or more but who knows...So many "studies" have different results. I've heard that even the cheapest hooks will not dissolve in salt water after 120 days and still be 95% intact. I've also heard that if you leave the hook in, most of the fish will spit it out or somehow eject it within a week or so. I guess the fish is probably better off with a hook stuck in it rather than being dead because someone tried to remove it by force. I think if you can cut off part of the hook it will have a better chance.

This looks like an interesting way to remove a deep set hook... I don't get a lot of deeply hooked fish (knock-knock) but the next time I do I might give this method a shot. http://www.in-fisherman.com/magazine/articles/if2806_HookRemoval/index.html

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Many times I have caught fish with hooks still in their mouths. Once, bobbering, I set the hook, line broke, retied, tossed it back out, bobber went down immediately, caught that one, and it had my previous hook in the roof of the mouth. Hooks do not bother fish at all.

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Thats not necessarily true . If the hook stays in the lip probably won't be a problem . It's when they get past the lips into the gills , stomach , etc. , that they can kill the fish with infections and such . I think there was a study done that shows there is an almost 80 percent mortality rate , within a specified time period , of fish that have hooks left in them .

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This is a critical time of the year for us to pay extra attention to how we fish not only on Mille Lacs Lake but other shallower lakes too.

When fishing walleyes in 20ft of water or more when the water temps are over 70 degress on the surface, it is very important when hooking into a walleye to SLOWLY fight this fish to the boat. By slowly fighting this fish you are bringing this fish up from cooler temp water on the bottom to much warmer water temps on the surface. Along with water temp, the pressure from the water depth is much different too and has a very critical affect on the fish too.

Here is an example. Its very much like when you fly in a airplane and your ears plug up then pop as the plane slowly assends up in the air. If the plane was to just head straight for the sky upwards without a slow gradual assend your body would not be able to take the pressure. Thats why astranaunts and fighter pilots have to wear pressurized suits and helmets.

Now, once you have caught the fish if at all possible try to take the hook out while the fish is still in the water if the fish is not going to be kept. Rubber nets are the best to work out of and they are much easier on the fish. When you net the fish just keep the net in the water while you unhook the fish. But by keeping that fish in the water will have a much greater chance of survival.

Having some unhooking fish tools are a must in the boat. Hemustat,long nose pliers, fish hook pliers all work very good. My fishing partners along with myself always have these tools in the boat.

I seen allot of people including some top tourney fisherman net a fish and throw the net with the fish in them onto the floor of the boat. I advice you to please not do this. The twine from the non rubber nets along with the carpeting on the bottom of your boat will and does damage the film coat of mucus(slim)of the fish and the fish will be very succeptable to infections and can die from this too.

Just remember that the bigger fish that we release reproduce the fish that we keep to eat. Treat these bigger fish with TLC ALL THE TIME. I see peope get upset because the fish is not in the slot to keep and they treat these fish like they are carp out on the lake. Just remember these fish are the future of this lake.

In a perfect scernario reel your fish in slowly from deeper depths when the water temps are warmer. Try to unhook your fish while the fish is in the net in the water still. And try not to handle the fish as much as possible. If we all do this the fish world will be a better place for us and the fish!

Fish On!!!

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I just read an article written by DNR research that puts C&R Walleye Mortality on Mille Lacs from Tournament fishing at 40 percent! blush.gif

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Hey Cranker that sounds like a great thing to practice.I have watched a few boats to take a fish that was over the slot and just dump it over the side of the boat from about 2 feet up.

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