Re-compressing Rock Fish the Easy Way

Discussion in 'Fishing Chit Chat' started by sdfishkiller, Mar 10, 2012.

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  1. sdfishkiller

    I was thinking about how to re-compress Rock Fish fast and easy, without having to use special gear like an upside down weighted milk crate,

    or this:

    or this:

    I figure people are lazy and won't go out of their way to save the tiny cods, which is sad, we should be more proactive in Rock Fish conservation. I figure the only way to get people to re-compress their unwanted catch is to incorporate the release device into the gangion itself. It should be illegal to throw tiny cods back only to watch them drift a "Trail of Tears."

    Yeah, I coined that and "Chandelier of Death." LOL

    So I did a little on the water experimenting. When I fish cod, I attach a barrel swivel that has a duo-lock snap to my main line. I then attach my gangion to this swivel. I also attach a Pro-Mar green LED strobe light to this swivel. "No light, no bite." LOL But that's another story.

    So.....what I did was, I took a 6/0 9174 Mustad and pinched the barb all the way down and attached it to the top swivel previously mentioned.

    If I get a small cod, I unhook it from my baited gangion and reattach it by the jaw to the barb-less 6/0 on swivel.

    I then check my bait and re-deploy my gangion into the depths. This takes little extra effort to do the right thing and send your unwanted catch back down.

    The hook can pivot up and down on the duo-lock snap, so that it turns upside down and drags the cod down, rocketing it back to depth, but hangs upright when you attach the cod.

    This is easy and effective. The only issue is that now, technically, there are 3 hooks on your rig, even though 1 is un-baited and barb-less. I'm willing to risk it in the interest of my cod conservation efforts. I imagine a good pair of dikes could clip off the hook point, thus, no longer technically being a hook, but attaching the cod would be more difficult.

    Anyway, just an idea to end............."The Trail of Tears."

  2. Trayscool

    We were doing the same thing by using a barbless hook tied upside down on the main line above the gangion. When they get down they swim right off
  3. blownbudget

    Good post. We use the SFD. Works perfect.
  4. dalurker

  5. Carl

    I share your disgust at the "trail of tears" as you aptly put it. I've also put some thought into solutions. Being that I'm skeptical that fish yanked from the depths and rocketed back down have a high % of fruitful futures I've come up with a different school of thought.
    I think the regs should be that ALL fish caught over a certain depth, determined by legitimate mortality upon release data, MUST be kept.
    If 3" fish start counting against your limit, anglers will quit putting little hooks with little strips of squid down to catch whatever was "nibbling" their bigger bait. The result would be that the juvies stay down there to complete the circle of life rather than be a dead discard. Worst case scenario they wind up as part of an anglers presumably sustainable bag limit.
    Of course some won't follow the rules.......
  6. Fishybuzz

    And I bet it's gonna attract some attention from lings.....
  7. Bank Robber

    I picked one up at the show. $30 bucks was a bit high but its a lot easier than the shelton release. The problem I had with the Shelton was that my boat is has a lot of freeboard so half the time I have to drop the fish a few inches to the water and it often fall off. Frustrating. I don't mind keeping a rod rigged p for this purpose god knows I have enough of them LOL

    My one thought on the roklees is that if you are releasing a big cow or boccacio say over 6 or 7 lbs you need to use a lot of weight. I think the guy said you could use up to about 3 lbs of weight. Anymore than that and the fish will release on the surface :( I suggested he make an extra spring for it. Either way it looks real easy to use.
  8. sdfishkiller

    Even if it was law, no one will keep them as part of their limit, there are no wardens out there to see your "Trail of Tears." They will still be thrown back to float away and usually a gull will attempt to carry them off, disposing of the "evidence trail".

    I think the 5 or 6 guys on this thread are the only ones who even care. That's why the simple hook on a swivel technique MIGHT get a few more to try it.
  9. sdfishkiller

    That was my 1st thought, snelling a 6/0-8/0 barbless hook upside down to the top of the gangion.

    The hook on the swivel technique works great bcuz it pivots rightside up for hanging them on and then turns upside down when you deploy the rig.
  10. REK

    Seems there was a study done where they tagged deep caught rockfishes, groupers, blacks and sent them back down with an upside down milk crate or hook devices. They survived and did well. So it seems these devices work.
  11. Reel hip

    All good ideas. I use a separate rod with a barbless hook. I like your idea that basically let's me stay fishing while unhooking a juvenile. Thanks
  12. yellowdog

    So you think dragging them down sticks their eyes back in their heads and their bladders back in their guts? 99% of the "tears" I catch don't have a chance. I try but most end up as pelican food.
  13. sdfishkiller

    Yes, they re-compress. Doesn't sound pleasant, but I guess it works. Ever see what a styro-foam cup looks like at that depth?

    There are studies that show tagged fish survived re-compression.

    Sidenote, not regarding re-compression: Capt. Booger of the San Diego caught a tagged Sculpin at North Island of the Los Coronados, MX. that was tagged in Central California! What?
  14. DoubletroubleII

    I usually deflate by using a hypo-needle inserted into side......they swim right down on their own. I originally used the needle from my worm inflater by removing from the bottle........but now......

  15. Derby

    Just use the Shelton release the same way.

    Attach it to your main and then the gangion to the release.
  16. Reel hip

    I used to do that too! No doubt that they swim away, but I was told some years ago that the needle will cause infection and that will kill them anyway.
  17. DoubletroubleII

    I don't know if you get the fishing show "Spanish Fly", but they had the makers of the tool I showed in my above thread. They had some marine biologist on that varied that it did not infect the fish. But......who thought is fish get damaged all the time from predators and heel up fine.
  18. Bank Robber

    I'm curious about what the cold hard facts are on this. A lot of cod come up with slices and cuts in them and they seem fine. Non an internal injury like this would be. It has to be better than letting them drift away on the surface.
  19. Carl

    x2 Anything is better than letting float away on the surface,

    I'd rather see the babies not caught in the first place.....Minimized anyway.

    Even if the released decompressed fish dont survive they will feed the lings and be part of the food chain we care about instead of feeding the birds.