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threadfin handling


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as a follow up to this quote from Angus:

"With that in mind, it would be interesting if a few of the veteran threaddy cacthers would put their thoughts down (in a seperate thread so it gets noticed) as to effective release etc. With enough info it might be possible to knock together a front page article with a forum link. Even if only a few people read it and learnt something useful from it could save a few large breeding fish in the future..."

alot of my experience is with larger fish at the mouth, and possibly the biggest lesson i've learned is to do most of the handling while the fish is still in the water. If you have an environet, use it to keep the fish immobile in the water while you take the hooks out.

singles work well on lures, and circle hooks work pretty well when using livies but theres still a chance of gut hooking with circles, so i personally avoid livebaiting altogether. anyway, its usually a 2 person job so have one person immobilise the fish while still in the water, and the 2nd person remove hooks etc. if the bladder is inflated and the fish is floating a release weight is the best way to go. you can vent the fish with a needle but its riskier, as its possible to damage sensitive areas of the fish while doing it.

if you have to remove the fish from the water for any reason put one hand in its gob and the other hand supporting the midsection, and give it a comfort lift into the boat etc.


(handle like this, one hand under midsection supporting the weight)

nets arent the greatest as the fish can get bent around and strain put in weird places. its best not to handle big big fish at all if you can avoid it, take photos while its in the water. for smaller fish around a M and smaller, a quick comfort lift -> photo -> release is fine, but get everything ready before the fish is lifted into the boat, and make sure to support the weight the whole way.

im sure there are plenty of people with their own experiences to share so post away and hopefully this thread can help to encourage safe handling of these magnificent beasts

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ok short version :P

squeeze your barbs down if bait fishing, not saying go barbless i know its hard to keep a bait on the hook, but good quality hooks like gamakatsu generally have small barbs compared to cheapies so consider that.

if hooked in the throat apply as little pressure to remove the fish from the water via the line, id recommend a net in that case, the more pressure u exert the more tearing and the more potential bleeding from the gills.

carefully twist the hook out in a rolling motion and the fish should be in great condition, dont hang fish off boga grips threadfin cannot bite you, no teeth. support the weight in the mid sections for a pic and get them back in the water asap.

if the fish is under 1m long generally they rarely have swim bladder problems so just concentrate on removing hooks and getting fast pics while the fish is healthy, there also quiet a slimy fish if the option is there to avoid the fish flapping around on things that will take its slime off all the better, a quick jaw grip helps prevent damage once landed.

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Just on the bleeding from the gills point - I disagree that if they're bleeding they have to be destined for the table. I've caught and recaught fish that were leaking pretty badly (weeks part). Chances of survival are always greater if returned to the water than locked in the fridge ;) :laugh:

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