Dead Fish Swimming!!!

By: Craig Sandell © 2015

Craig SandellAs in past seasons, folks are again trying to discredit the Chippewa Flowage Musky Study on single hook mortality. Did they participate? Did they contribute? What is their motivation for condemning a study that seeks only to provide more information about the Muskie we all love to hunt…frankly, I don’t know and I don’t care.

I also think that it does our sport and our fisheries no service to have print publications for Musky and Pike continue to 'make believe' that sucker fishing, whether employing a 'J' hook or a 'Circle Hook', does little or no harm to the Muskie.

Surely, articles posted on MHM attempt to cast doubt on competent catch and recapture studies by attempting to frame the studies without 'independent peer review' as less than accurate...That is just 'Mule Muffins'. There are NO recognized independent and unbiased peer review authorities qualified to make Musky study pronouncements. MHM is following the Chinese model of information dissemination; "If you tell a lie loud enough over and over again, people will take it as fact".

Here is something to consider:

Take a sharp hook and attach it to a 40 pound test fishing line. Now, swallow the hook and give the end of the line to a fisherman friend. Walk away from the friend until the line is taunt. Now, signal your friend to pull as hard as he can on the line attached to the hook that is now in your stomach while you run as fast as you can away from your friend.

What do you think will happen? Will the hook puncture your stomach?…A good possibility. If not your stomach, will it snag something in your throat… A good possibility. Now, with the hook snagged in your throat or stomach, tell your friend to just cut the line.

Now that your throat or stomach has been severely injured, DO NOT seek any medical attention. Try to carry on with your life as though nothing had happened and see how long you will live and see what quality of life you will have.

Surely, Muskie are not people…but they are still animals with the same basic body functions that we have. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist or peer review to noodle the conclusion that the puncturing of an animal’s throat or stomach with a sharp pointed object cannot be a blessing for the animal.

Forget the studies! Forget the ‘would be’ experts and nay Sayers. Rely upon your own common sense. If you are using a single hook sucker rig to catch Muskie (Standard or Circle), then you ARE hooking or damaging the stomach or throat of the fish. When you release that Muskie you condemn it to a slow and uncomfortable death. Sure, you can say you released the fish and thump your chest about how you practice "Catch & Release" but in your heart you know that that Muskie is just a "dead fish swimming".

Tight Lines
Craig Sandell