Fish Care Guidelines
for Tournament Anglers
From Operation Bass
healthy in the livewell is important for tournament anglers and
those not practicing catch and release. Several things can be
done to help your fish remain healthy. Tournament organization
has some hints they recommend to their anglers. They will work
||New product keeps bass alive and
even makes them more healthy according to anglers using Rejuvenade
in early tests.
Operation Bass is extremely
vigilant when it comes to protecting the very resource that our
business is built upon, namely bass. All of our tournaments are,
of course, catch-and-release. As a company, Operation Bass maintains
a 98 percent live-release rate.
There are two sides of
the coin when it comes to keeping fish healthy in a tournament.
All of the procedures centering around the weigh-in are important.
However, the bass spend a much greater amount of time in the
livewells of anglers than they do during a weigh-in. So, we're
providing this comprehensive list of steps you can take to keep
your catch alive and healthy.
I. Fill your livewell
early in the day.
Fill your livewell at your first stop. It will be cooler and
better aerated than later on. Use water from open lake areas
with good water quality.
II. Turn on the recirculating
aerator immediately. Set
your aerator switch to manual (continuous operation). Run the
aerator all day. If your pump only runs on a timer, run it as
frequently as possible.
III. Land fish quickly
and handle them as little as possible. Grasp fish by the lower jaw and hold them vertically.
Bend the jaw as little as possible. Wet your hands before touching
fish. Support large fish with a wet hand under the belly. Use
soft, knotless nylon or rubber landing nets. Don't allow fish
to touch boat carpet When deep hooks cannot be removed, cut line
five or six inches above the hook Don't keep fish out of water
longer than you can hold your breath
IV. Care for fish while
in livewells. Fish
in forward livewells are more likely to be injured from bouncing
while travelling in rough water. Monitor livewell temperatures.
When water temperatures are below 75 degrees, pump fresh water
as often as your system will allow. When water temperatures are
above 75 degrees, recirculate live well water rather than pumping
in hot lake water.
Use ice to cool water and
slow your fishs' metabolisms One eight pound block of ice (one
gallon plastic jug) cools water in a 30-gallon live well about
10 degrees for three hours. Block ice melts more slowly.
Add one-thrid cup of non-iodized
salt per five gallons. It helps maintain electrolyte balance
and reduces the effects of stress. Use 'Live N Well' or 'Catch
& Release' products to maintain metabolism.
Drain half of the livewell
water every three hours and refill with fresh water to remove
waste byproducts like carbon dioxide and ammonia.
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