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That is an excellent article Tom. I want to add a chemical to my livewell now that our water is around 75-77 degrees right now. It will only get higher so I want to help these fish I catch regain their strength. I let all the small ones go immediately but for picture fish I want to place them in a treated livewell.

Is Please release me chemical any good? Or is plain non iodized salt good? Of course with some ice in it too.

Thanks.

This is why I quit fishing that Sunday tournament. The way they treat the fish during weigh in it is a guarantee that allot of fish die. That will probably rise in June-September as the water temps get in the high 80's to sometimes in the low 90's.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The key points in this article is replacing 1/2 the live well water every 3 hours and keeping the recirculation pump on all the time. I have a temperature probe in my live well and use a stay alive stringer. I realize that some waters have predators like alligators and a stringer is not appropriate. This article states that 75 degrees F is the top end limit and I agree. Icing the live well is OK if you only add a little at a time, as thermal shock is also deadly. I freeze my own dechlorinated water in freezer bags and use them to cool my drinks and poor the melted water in the live well during the day/night. The only time I keep fish in the live well is charity night tournaments held during the summer. Filling the live well from main lake water is also a good idea.
Catch & Release chemicals are good, however I wouldn't use both deionized salt and chemicals.
Tom
note, This article was posted by BarryTheBass, BassInsider board.
 

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The boats used by a striper guide I help occasionally have a hose connected to the livewell intake. It can be lowered to about 15' down into cooler water. The aerator puts O2 back in. The system is a winner, and very simple, not filling the livewell with hot surface water. Keeping stripers alive all day is a necessity to prevent them from dying and sliming everything, stinking within an hour. A 12 volt regrigeration unit keeps live bait cooled down in a large tank onboard.

Jim
 

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My club just ' ponied ' up the money to supply every boater in our club a bottle of ' please release me ' :thumbup01:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Summer is officially here and as the temperatures raise so does the odds on bass survival in a live well. If you are not fishing a tournament and don't plan on keeping your catch, release it immediately. The thought that if you release the bass, it may go back to the school and shut them off is just that, a thought. If you put the bass in the live well, it's chances of survival are around 70% or less if the surface water temperature is 80 degrees of higher. The chances of that bass shutting off a bite are less than 5%, so play the odds and release them quickly.
If you are a tournament fisherman, then install an oxygen generator and take a 10 pound bag of ice with you to keep your drinking water and bass cool. Every 1/2 hour, add a handfull of ice cubes to the live well water. When running down the middle of the lake, stop and recirculate the water as the main lake water should be a few degrees cooler.
I don't have any idea of how many of you have ever swam in a lake that you fish during the summer period. Most lakes have a 2 degree temperature change down about 4 to 5 feetdown and that the depth the shore line bass tend to stay in, not the 80 degree surface water. The bigger bass will tend to locate down near the thermocline where the water temperature makes faster 3 to 5 degree temperature change. What that means is the bass out of deeper water are in about 72 to 75 degree water water and you are putting them into 80 degree water and that shock may kill a bass.
Tom
 
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Good reminders. I try to get the fish photoed and released within 1 minute. If longer I will hold the fish in the water for a few then take it out again if I need to get things ready. Now I only put a bass in a livewell if I have to, so I can get my camera ready. That is of course if the fish is picture quality. :)

Please be kind to your bass and try your best to not let them flop around on dry carpeting. Sometimes it happens as they get off your lure and flop around. But as best we can try to minimize that.

Recently I bought a rubber net. First I hate it. haha. It is way to heavy and shallow. But I know it doesn't hurt the fish. But it can wear you down in a hurry if you had to use the net allot. Plus the one I got is shallow so a really big fish wouldn't even fit in it anyway. I didn't realize it was that shallow at the store. I would hate to feel how heavy one is that is twice as deep as mine.

Anyway, just a few steps to ensure that the fish we release (Hopefully all the large ones ;) are going to be OK.
 

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thanks guys for bringing this subject to the front again! Being a novice, I was just going to do some research for this kind of information and with the summertime heat in the south, it's a good reminder that extra care needs to be taken this time of year dance01:

anything we can do to protect our resources
 

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Discussion Starter #10
BASS Times, May 2007 issue has a article by Berkey's Dr. Keith Jones worth reading; Calming the Waters of Stressed Bass.
Dr. Jones suggest keeping the live well water temperature to 60 degrees or several degrees less than 72, add a aeration bubbling apparatus and add salt. The ideal salt level is the same a the salinity of the basses blood level, however he didn't define that further. Dr. Jones recommends a mixture of 3/4 to 1 cup non-iodized salt to every 10 gallons of water. He also recommends adding bagged ice, kept in the plastic bag to prevent chlorine contamination.
Stresses form fighting the bass is reduced with a shorter fight period, which makes sense and large bass are particularity susceptible to heavy tournament moralities, as their live well requirements are more demanding.
I believe we will be reading more about bass handling to improve survival rates and this article is just the beginning of educating the general bass fishing public. This is good for our sport and everyone us should consider the affects of stress to bass when caught and placed in a live well.
Tom
note; adding salt to water needs to be mixed in a bucket to dissolve the salt granules before pouring into the live well. You must throughly rinse the live well out with fresh water after the days outing, if you have added salt water, to prevent corrosion of dissimilar metals that may be in the system.
It may be better to freeze de chlorinated salt water to use as both a coolant and calming solution.
 

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Another product that is being used in tournaments is the Gator Grip fish bags that are heavy duty construction with handles and an inner mesh net bag. The mesh net bag contains the bass and can be lifted out of the storage bag and placed into the a recirculating tank. The mesh net bad weighs .35 lbs and can be used to weight the bass and deduct the .35 from the total weight. This reducing handling of the bass after removed from the live well.
Tom
note; http://www.gatorgrip.com
article in BASS Times, May 2007
 

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I used a catch and release chemical this past tourny season... Every time my fish had more energy and we very much alive at weigh in..
 

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I use Please Release Me in my live well and even though I have not use it yet but use 3% Hydrogen peroxide to every 10 gal. This comes from Sure Life directly. They make Please Release Me and there is also a new formula out that is more directed to keep fish in live wells.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Adding a chemical treatment is good, basically salts. The big issue is maintaining good DO levels and temperature levels that doesn't put the bass into shock. Poor handling has a major affect on the basses ability to survive after being released. A few bass die in the live well, however it's the post released bass mortality that is the issue. If a bass is doing poorly in the live well, its may be already too late to revive that fish and most tournament fisherman will have it weighed and released, knowing the bass in having problems, as long as they don't take a penalty. It's the out of sight out of mind mentality, can't see the bass dieing, so it must be OK.
We all need to do a better job handling captive bass or don't putthe bass into a live well. If they are in trouble, keep them and take the bass home for dinner, it's not poor sportsmenship to eat a bass. C & R has gone far beyond common sense IMO.
Tom
 

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oldschool said:
Another product that is being used in tournaments is the Gator Grip fish bags that are heavy duty construction with handles and an inner mesh net bag. The mesh net bag contains the bass and can be lifted out of the storage bag and placed into the a recirculating tank. The mesh net bad weighs .35 lbs and can be used to weight the bass and deduct the .35 from the total weight. This reducing handling of the bass after removed from the live well.
Tom
note; http://www.gatorgrip.com
article in BASS Times, May 2007
I handle and weigh-in at our tournaments. I think this is a wonderful idea. Careful and deliberate as I am when handling Bass they still are difficult to handle at times and I worry very much about the harm it might cause.
 
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