Caught Fish

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Caught Fish

Postby Bill Crain » Fri May 01, 2015 3:01 pm

Is it just me but i am tired of other TV shows that insist that the touching of the leader is a "Caught Fish" I have never seen that by Dahlberg is all the years of his shows do this. I understand this started in FLORIDA for the tourist from up north. What do you think?
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Re: Caught Fish

Postby aka anglinarcher » Sat May 09, 2015 11:08 am

Bill, I understand where you are coming from on this. It seems a little lame to me as well, but ...... there is a reason, or at least an explanation.

I am old enough to remember when almost all caught fish (Saltwater) came to boat with a gaff. Needless to say, they came to the boat dead. Catching the fish meant it was dead, and a lot of great fish that could have otherwise been released were never even given the chance. Obviously catch and release was not even heard of in those days.

Today, for better or worse, but I think mostly better, C&R is the norm. BUT, the reason gaffs were used was because it was safer to the fisherman, and frankly a lot easier. The thinking that has been explained to me is that if you are able to "touch the leader", then the fish was clearly close enough to get it with a gaff. If it is close enough for the 'sure thing', the gaff, should it not be considered caught now?

I guess that we have a few options.

One, we could start using gaffs again. With all of the replica mounting options, this makes no sense unless you are going to eat the fish. I believe there is a place for eating angler caught fresh fish, but it does not play well on TV (LOL) for the most part. Also, I don't think I want to eat a Tarpon or a Sail or a ...... Just saying.

Two, we could require one to actually control the fish, and either remove the hook or at least bring it on board to claim a caught fish. This is doable, but I would suggest that fish mortality would go up. This is kind of contrary to our C&R dogma we now follow.

Three, we could continue to allow people to consider it a "caught fish" if they touch the leader. This does prevent going back to option one, and for TV and guided anglers, it is better then Option two.

Of course I would love to hear if you have another option to present, or another view on the subject.

I do agree, I don't ever remember seeing Larry use the "I touched the leader" argument, but if he did, it would not bother me. I think that this all falls into our modern sensibilities. Let me try to explain.

I have issue with stainless steel hooks. No matter how good you are as a fisherman, sooner or later a fish will break off. SS hooks will remain for a very very long time, perhaps until death. I discourage SS Hooks. This is NOT the NORM today for salt, but this is my personal sensibility. PS, a lot of other hooks are almost as bad about not rusting out on fish, and I have issue with them as well.

I do encourage circle hooks for bait fishing, but again, I want them to rust. Now, this is NOT the NORM today, but this is my personal sensibility. I realize that circle hooks are not for everything.

For you, I see that touching the leader is NOT one of your personal sensibilities. OK, fair enough. Times change, and just as C&R is the Norm today, perhaps, if you sell your point well, one day we will no longer consider touching the leader sufficient. I just hope that we can teach everyone to be as good as Mr. Dahlberg is at controlling and releasing those fish. :idea: :mrgreen:
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Re: Caught Fish

Postby Badger1992 » Sat May 09, 2015 8:02 pm

Anglin, I agree with all you said. If you touch the leader, the fish "should" be able to be gaffed, or netted and brought aboard the boat. I think most fish would rather be released without being removed from the water! Larry has released many billfish, tarpon and others without bringing them into the boat-you can't bring a 200lb tarpon on deck if you want it to live!

I think it would be lame to leader a largemouth bass or channel catfish, but I have no problem with leadering a marlin, tarpon, goliath grouper, or any other large or fragile fish, and call it a "catch".
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Re: Caught Fish

Postby Gaebler20 » Wed May 13, 2015 11:08 am

The touching leader concept was started mainly because in a lot of states and countries around the world, it is illegal to take some fish out of the water.. For instance, in Florida, you can't take a goliath grouper out of the water... That's why you see do many people jump into the water to take pictures with them... Same goes in places so over the world...
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Re: Caught Fish

Postby dahlberg » Wed May 13, 2015 1:54 pm

Interesting question, but in many ways I agree with bill. Like when you really, really wanted to catch, sniff, examine, touch and photograph a fish and you've got the leader or have touched it, and the fish gets off I'd hardly say you caught it. I'd say darn near caught it, and might likely count it in my daily total if i was keeping track, but caught? No.
If we were looking for dinner the answer is obvious.
If on the other hand I took a double wrap and gave it a jerk and it popped it was caught.

In my mind it's really close to a long "gimme" in golf!
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