View Full Version : Fish Remains
08-27-07, 09:46 PM
This is kind of a wierd question but I always wondered if there was some 'normal' thing to do or something, but what do you guys do with the fish remains after you've filleted the fish. I think about this while camping and when I take fish home. I've been burying them...but what do you guys do?
B Kar Ma
08-28-07, 08:47 AM
Do not put the guts in a river - I did that several years ago at the dam - the ranger was none to happy and I was instructed to wade out and get them. I always thought that nature would dispose of the remains. Seems the federal government has a different notion.
Now, I would take them wih me was normal trash and dispose of it that way.
08-28-07, 08:55 AM
If I am camping, I burn them in the fire. Otherwise, I typically just ice my fish down in a cooler and then clean them when I get home. I then freeze the guts and dispose of them with my normal garbage.
08-28-07, 09:58 AM
I believe the native Americans used to burry them in their gardens.
I was wondering this as well. I rarely keep fish, but on a recent trip out of state the guys I fished with cleaned their fish on the river bank.
Interesting idea about freezing them and disposing of them.
08-28-07, 10:46 AM
Would not the crayfish, turtles, etc. dispose of them? What happens when a fish dies? Does somebody go grab it and bury it?
p.s. I normally ice any fish I keep and clean them at home and put the entrails, etc. around my tomatoes or whatever is in the garden.
08-28-07, 11:04 AM
Don't be a wuss..... eat 'em!
08-28-07, 11:44 AM
I thought we were on the North Georgia Trout board, third world country trout board. Gross:yikes:
:shake: the tought just makes me want to never eat a fish again.
08-28-07, 01:37 PM
When I think of all the filet tables located next to the water, or a boat launch, where other fish actively feed on the remains as you drop them in the water, I am surprised that recycling;) is not acceptable. Your neighbors in Florida will love you when you either put them in the condo dumpster or outdoor trash can and let them set a week.
08-28-07, 01:42 PM
What's the objection or disadvantage of putting them in the water if you clean fish next to a river or stream? They attract bears & racoons? Just curious.
08-28-07, 01:54 PM
My last trip to the Fort Meyers area had a filet table at the end of a pier where you could filet fish and drop the remains in the bay. There were 30 inch snook circling below, I assume feasting if not on the remains the bait fish eating the remains.
08-28-07, 02:12 PM
No joke! Down at Ft. Morgan, when we clean any catch, we save the remains for either the crab basket bait or for the minnow trap. Comes in handy and that appears to be the food of choice for both the crabs and minnows. We are seldom, if ever, out of either crabs or baitfish.
08-28-07, 05:25 PM
On the Russian River (Kenai Peninsula, AK) there are state owned "cleaning tables" made of stainless steel.....sitting in the river. You actually have to wade out knee deep to get to them. The rangers encourage you to clean your salmon at these tables to keep the scent down ....and the bears away. Matter of fact, a well placed flesh fly drifted downstream of said tables will often result in a rainbow trout of gargantuan proportions.
08-28-07, 05:27 PM
when trying to fillet dolphin (which is a lot harder in that nice ol' humid tropical sun;) ) we just poke out the eyes and break the backs and chunk them in the canal and they sunk to the bottom. you'd be suprised how many carcasses "dissappeared" by morning. i guess why all of those big lobsters hung around the dock.:D
08-28-07, 05:49 PM
Back when I kept fish ,I would often clean them on the stream bank an toss the remains in the water under the impression I was recycling nutrients back where they belong.Many streams are sorely lacking the biomass to maintain ahealthy food chain, in some steelhead and salmon streams they actually throw whole frozen fish in so there will be a base for next years fry to eat. I agree with leave no trace ethics when camping and dealing with human and animal waste brought into an enviroment, but something seem wrong about removing nutrients from a system where they are a natural part of the food chain.
08-28-07, 06:03 PM
10-4 Michael. I am becoming persuaded.
...to be detrimental to the habitat, I will continue to throw the innards in the stream, where I believe the crayfish and other scavengers will dispose of them.
Now if you are talking about the remains after thay are cooked and eaten to the bone, that's another problem.
08-28-07, 06:47 PM
I have to side with Tom. I think the only objection is to preserve the esthetics of a pristine location. I'd much rather feed the crawfish & fish and the raccoons.
08-28-07, 08:28 PM
I think the only legitimate biological concern would be that you don't want alot of rotting material in the water, the bateria suck out oxygen. But some entrails here, some entrails there, no big deal. I remember sitting in the East Fork Chatooga one fall cleaning a rainbow trout at the mouth on the north fork, and not even halfway finished with the single fish, I felt something on my foot and looked down and there were no less than a dozen crawdads that I could see making their way to the carcass.
08-28-07, 10:47 PM
This thread is becoming a broken record. It's all been said before; see attached post.
Biologically there is nothing detramental to leaving fish "flesh" in the river. However; crawdads and other fish, don't eat fish heads. At least not big ones.
The real problem I have is the esthectics. To me it's an eye sore to see fish guts in a stream I may be fishing, swimming, boating, or filtering water from while camping. Fishermen are not the only ones who visit our rivers and streams, and Most non-anglers find it offensive to see fish carcases in the river. If you think that by some chance you are helping the eco system by leaving your fish guts behind, than please put them under a rock so everyone else won't have to see what a wonderful fisherman you are.
"Leave no trace", it's not just a catch phrase, it's a good idea!
First, when members of the board get tired of a subject, the broken record will stop playing.
In Alaska, the rotting salmon flesh is most beneficial to the stream's inhabitants. It occurs year after year after year.
From what I gather on this board, hardly anyone kills fish....just us rednecks who live up here.
Lastly, I usually clean my fish away from a popular crossing spot; but, I don't "hide" the guts under a rock. They are swept away by the current and are consumed by fish, crawfish and other inhabitants.
Have a great day and Tight Lines.:)
08-29-07, 01:03 PM
In Alaska, the rotting salmon flesh is most beneficial to the stream's inhabitants.
This is not Alaska. We don't have Brown bears, Sea Gulls, A large population of fish, Eagles, Ospreys, Hawks, River Otters, and Mink that feed on the dead carcasses. We only have a few of these, and in limited amounts. Just because it happens in Alaska natually doesn't mean it's good here, or should happen here. The climate is a lot different there as well. The cooler air and water temperatures keep Down the number of bacteria that also feed on the carcasses. The temperatures here in the south would create a an EPA disaster with the high bacteria counts, if that many fish died in our rivers at one time.
hardly anyone kills fish....just us rednecks who live up here.
If you want to label people who "kill" fish as rednecks that's your right, but it's that kind of mentality that gives you a bad wrap.
What I get from that statement is this; because you stated "just us rednecks who live up here", It sounds that only rednecks live up there, and everyone else who doesn't "live up here", is an outsider and thus is not entitled to any say. I figure if you live up there and own the river then go right ahead and leave as many carcasses as you want. Afterall it's your river.
If you don't OWN the river then leave it how you found it. Personally I'm getting tired of picking up after the "rednecks", as you put it. How much trouble is it to pick up after yourself? This all boils down to having respect for the next person who visits the area. I'm guessing based on your comments that you don't have any respect for other people who visit our public rivers.:shake:
~Bring on the fodder~
....this isn't Alaska? Mark, I don't think the few guts from the trout caught here in North Georgia approaches a fraction of the salmon carcasses in Alaska's streams. And they do add to the bio mass in our streams.
I use the term "redneck" poking fun at us folks who do live up here. I am sorry, but this is where I live. That term and "bubba" is used quite frequently on this board. I use to take offense to it but it rolls off my back like water on a duck.
You might be taking my remarks far too seriously. If you wish to carry fish guts around in your kayak, you certainly aren't upsetting me. I will continue to dispose of the very few fish entrails I have as I have in the past. I am confident they are not spoiling the habitat.
Take care and Tight Lines:)
We gonna have to get out some dueling pistols here? Getting a little heated. I actually spoke to a ranger about this a few years ago up near Buford Dam and he said he routinely gives people tickets for littering if he catches them throwing guts in the river. I had just spoken to a guy a little while before this who was cleaning his fish and he got all mad at me for having the gall to say anything, and I was being nice and trying to be informative, not combative. That led to my conversation with said DNR person. Since there is not a big population of bottom feeders in the Hooch, that stuff does typically just rot and in quantity could be detrimental to the stream quality. So I say, for both stream quality and aesthetic purposes, dispose of the guts away from our clean water. Some of you guys comparing this to salt water, that's apples and oranges. There ain't any sharks or crabs in a trout stream!
I simply disagree. I think no less of those who disagree with me on this subject so I will leave the dueling pistols in their cases.
08-29-07, 04:12 PM
[quote=Tom;458295 I will continue to dispose of the very few fish entrails I have as I have in the past. I am confident they are not spoiling the habitat.
Take care and Tight Lines:)[/quote]
To me this shows a lack of respect for other people. You see nothing wrong with it because that's just how you've done it for so long. Well other people (non-anglers) such as campers, swimmers, other fishermen, hikers, dog walkers, birders, and yes, kayakers, don't enjoy walking down a beautiful trail or stream bank in a remote setting only to walk opun fish guts and fish heads.
I wish that the DNR ranger that was giving out littering tickets had it in writing; maybe it is, I don't know. If a DNR ranger considers it as littering, and non anglers find it offensive, don't you think there might be a reason not to do as you've always done? As I said before, How hard is it to pick up after yourself? You are not the only one who visits these rivers and streams.
Funny thing; Micheal Vick didn't think there was anything wrong with dog fighting either until he got busted. I know they are two different things. That's not my point. My point is this; just because you don't have a problem with it, doesn't mean others don't, and it doesn't make it legal either.
08-29-07, 05:01 PM
I'm pretty sure this has been discussed before and I don't know if it really affects the stream biology. I do know it isn't very pleasant to see a bunch of heads and guts laying around. Kinda trashy looking. I learned at an early age that I didn't like fishing from the jetties or piers because there were a bunch of flies buzzing the bait, blood, guts, etc. that anglers (I have a hard time calling them that) would leave around. If the only reason you are fishing is for dinner, I don't see why you can't clean up after yourself. I've cleaned a few stockers streamside, but I pick up after myself, bag the heads and guts, freeze at home, and put them out with the trash on Wednesday with the leftover bones from Sunday.
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