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Farqwads! I just spoke to the dnr guy at clinton river about this subject at 7 am. Wish they would feed someone these fish. Or weigh and release when out on lake with a fish cam or something. Or have a livewell boat with refrigerated water or something.
It's gotta be for the public viewing. Can't see why else.
 

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It's simple when money is involved people will cheat. Even with weigh in format tournaments a couple percent will cheat one way or another. I have seen people fish off limits waters and have seen nuts and bolts in stomachs of fish to add weight etc...

You only need 1 percent of dishonest fisherman to ruin an event. It isnt feasible to put an official on every boat for the avg tournmant the way the MLF does. The MLF has about 7 circuits total. The only level they do weigh and release format is the top level with their best 80 anglers. Even then they split the field up in groups of 40 per day because they struggle to have enough officals trained in the rules. Bassmaster only does it for one event per year for lake fork. They have a large network of people passionate about the sport that help organize the officals there.

There have been plenty of bump board style tournaments that have caught cheaters as well. Where you take a picture on a board then release. Cheating is so rampent in those I wouldn't put my money into it. There have been more than one that were caught cutting tails off of fish to use in the picture and extend the fish. Among other tricks.

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Wow. Maybe tourneys shouldn't take place if it's just a cesspool of cheaters.
 

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Its no different than any other sport. Only takes 1 to ruin it. With your argument fishing shouldnt be allowed. There is one guy on the lake breaking every rule he can for certain.

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I think it shouldn't be so blatantly obvious that fish are being turned into chum. It's ugly even if it's really not that bad for the resource.

I mean, doesn't it feel crappy to the participants too?
 

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If hooked in the tongue or gill area yes it may take an hr but tongue hooked fish will die at a very high rate. They bleed out slowly

The fish that die in a tourney are typcially from fatigue over swim bladder or tongue hooked IMO. Bass are extremely hardy. They can take temps to 83-85 with no issue at all. Smallmouth can handle 20 degree temp changes without issue based on literature from the DNR biologists. The only time i have ever had issues with livewell temps has been in the south with are temps 90-100 degrees and surface water temps of 87 degrees in the middle of the lake. No issues ever with temps on lake st clair for me.

I have seen tournaments that didnt handle weighins well. Everyone lined up in long lines with heavy bags of water. Anglers setting the bags down on hot asphalt while they wait inline for their turn At the bump tank etc. They usually only make that mistake once. The veteran anglers leave their fish in their aerated livewells in those scenarios until the weigh is almost finished.

Every tournament i have been involved in gives penalties for dead fish and Usually fairly severe so anglers do their best.

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I've caught musky that have healed over gill literally hanging out. Not sure how they survive sometimes.
 

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It looks bad for fisherman to leave them for sure. But is it really that bad if 25 boats go out and catch 5 bass each then 6 end up dying? Thats like 4%. They should be collected for sure and not left to rot in the water but the kill rate isn't atrocious. Tournaments collect data on total fish caught and how many are killed. It is a requirement to keep a log for each tournament. The average of dead fish for the highschool circuit I was involved with for 3 yrs was under 3%. I dont think it is much different than any other fishermans kill rate unless you are talking a walleye or panfish fisherman who keeps 100%.

Two guys on a boat in a tournament will go out and catch 30 fish and do their best to release every single fish. The same two guys could fish walleyes and keep 10 and we are griping at bass fisherman for losing an occasional fish. It makes no sense to me. I have caught countless bass this year and never killed a single one. Havent eaten one yet.

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I have a really hard time believing fishermen tossing them back right away is as bad as having them in a livewell. Maybe I'm wrong.

Could be delayed mortality but I've NEVER had a bass go belly up on me. Never.
 

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Regardless if it’s a deer or these bass, they are going to waste so it’s really the same. Only difference is a matter of the death which is semantics.
I personally have no issue with tournaments but there has to be better procedures and controls put in place to eliminate this stuff.


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Well, if it is really just tongue or gill hooked fish dying, either can't fish or maybe regulate the number of hook points to minimize mortality.
 
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