Many first-timers are curious enough to search for catch and release fishing guide in order for them to have substantial knowledge before they do fishing. Anglers who love catch-and-release fishing want nothing more than to ensure that the fish they return alive, and anglers who prefer to keep their catch feel the same way, whether they’re jigging for summer stripers or chunking for tuna. In contrast, other anglers who have been around for a while are likely to have seen many mishandled fish. The issue is much more often ignorance than neglect, but the result is the same in either case: a dead fish.

While it might sound paradoxical, releasing your catch to the wild improves your chances of being able to fish again in a year. Anglers have been practicing humane catch and release fishing for conservation purposes since the 19th century when the practice began in Canada. However, catching a fish and returning it to the sea isn’t all there is to it. If you are an aspiring angler and is wondering if there are catch and release fishing laws, you don’t have worry because there are only guidelines that you have to follow when doing catch and release fishing . To get you started, here are several dos and don’ts tips for aspiring anglers.

Catch and Release Fishing

Dos and Don’ts Guide in your Catch and Release Fishing


Do: Use barbless hooks

If possible, choose barbless fishing hooks when making your selection. If not, flatten or file the barb to do the least amount of harm to the fish’s flesh.

Do: If the hook is too deep, cut the thread.

Despite the best efforts, your hook can become lodged deep within the fish’s throat or gills, rendering it virtually impossible to extract the hook in a secure and timely manner. Cut the line in these situations. The hook will work its way out of the fish eventually.

Do: Pay attention to water temperature.

Keep in mind that the colder the water, the better the fish can handle a catch-and-release situation. Since their chances of recovery are significantly reduced during the summer heat, now is the best time to mitigate the effect on them.

Do: Revive the fish when exhausted.

Fish that seem to be on the verge of exhaustion should be revived. Pump water through their gills to do this. Lip the non-toothy fish and keep it in the water if the boat is going forward so that the forward motion pushes water into its mouth. To get some water moving, gently move the fish from side to side at anchor. When the fish has regained enough power to chomp down and attempt to bite your finger, it’s usually time to release it.

Do: Releasing the fish safely.

Rather than throwing the fish back into the lake carelessly, submerge it and keep it upright. If the fish seems to be slow, gently drive it forward and backward in still waters by facing it upstream towards the current. This will allow more oxygen to enter the fish’s gills, allowing them to recover rapidly.

Don’t Do:

Don’t: Touch the fish with a dry hand, a rag, or a towel.

Wet your hands first, or use a rag that has been pre-wetted. Anything dry that comes into contact with the fish, especially a dry towel, will help remove its slime. The slime is crucial because it improves the fish’s hydrodynamics and acts as an immune system by keeping pathogens out or trapping them.

Don’t: Attempt to remove the hook from a gut-hooked fish.

Cut the line as near as possible to the fish and let it swim free. Though this isn’t ideal, fish with the hook still inside them have a good chance of surviving (some studies show survival rates upwards of 60-percent). However, ripping or tearing the hook out typically results in so much harm that the fish has no chance.

Don’t: Use fishnets

Whenever possible, avoid using a net. As the fish thrashes, a tough, abrasive plastic net will injure it. This is, once again, a slime problem. The netting’s knots will scrape it away from the fish. One exception: get a net with a slick rubberized coating on the mesh that’s specially made for catch-and-release fishing.

Don’t: Use under-gunned tackle.

If you’re going to release a big fish, don’t use an under-gunned tackle. The fish is fighting for its life, and if the battle goes on long enough, it will wear out and die. Increase the size of your gear while purely catch-and-release fishing. If you’re going after a 50-pound-plus black drum (which are worm-infested, don’t make good table fare, and should always be released), you should be aware that using 10-pound gear will result in a long battle that the fish will not likely survive.

Don’t: Delay the releasing time.

It’s essential to complete the procedure as soon as possible to give the fish the best chance of survival. If you want a souvenir of your catch, have a fishing buddy take a sharp picture of you as you’re going through these measures. The catch-and-release method would be more successful if you release the fish quickly.

Read also: Do’s and Don’ts of Catch and Release.

Final Thoughts

It takes some practice to get the hang of adequately releasing fish. Start releasing fish until you reach your limits if you’re new to it. If the fish doesn’t seem to be surviving, you can still hold it and learn from your mistakes on the next one. Don’t think of it as a setback; no one succeeds every time.

There are some questions like “is catch and release fishing humane?” that you’ll find on the internet, and the answer is – Yes. The practice of catch-and-release fishing is critical for the preservation of your favourite fishing sites. Whether it’s a nearby lake or a beloved reef, releasing fish ensures that future generations will be able to enjoy it as well.

Catch-and-Release Fishing Spot in Niagara and St. Catherine 

This peak season, it’s a perfect time to take the opportunity to experience the exciting catch and release with the best fishing spots in Niagara and St. Catherine. Get ready for the challenging fight battle with large muskellunge and pikes. Contact Niagara Fish Assassin today at (289) 668-2543 or fill up our inquiry form online.