Fishermen catch and release millions of striped bass every year. By following these tips, you can ensure more of the striped bass you release survive to be caught again and contribute to striped bass conservation.
Consider Your Tackle
- Use single, barbless hooks whenever possible for easier hook removal.
- When using lures, consider removing one set of treble hooks, or swap out the trebles for single hooks.
- When fishing with bait, use non-offset circle hooks to minimize gut-hooking.
- When snagging live bait on treble hooks, transfer the bait to a single circle hook rig.
Minimize the Fight
- Use appropriate tackle that allows stripers to be brought in quickly.
- Once a fish is hooked, land it quickly rather than playing it to exhaustion.
Handle Stripers with Care
- Handle a striped bass as little as possible and release it quickly.
- Once a striper is landed, keep it from thrashing around and injuring itself.
- To lift a striped bass, hold it horizontally by gripping the lower jaw and supporting its weight. Avoid touching the eyes and gills.
- If a fish is hooked deep, cut the leader as close as you can to the hook and leave it in the fish.
Release them Right
- Return large stripers to the water gently in an upright, horizontal position.
- Revive fish by holding them headfirst into the current.
- Gently move fish forward to get water flowing through the mouth and over the gills.
- Do not let the fish go until it is able to swim strongly and freely out of your grasp.