Is it taboo to eat large mouth bass? My thoughts... - 2CoolFishing
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:29 PM   #1
Rather-b-fishin
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Is it taboo to eat large mouth bass? My thoughts...

If you're not a tournament angler or someone who understands the current "bass fishing culture" it would be very tough to comprehend some of the current stance on the subject regarding keeping bass for the purposes of eating.

I had to do some soul searching myself when I got back into LMB fishing 10 years ago. When I got back into tournament fishing my parents always asked me, "Well did y'all keep the fish? And I always replied no. They were like "What? Are you crazy?" paraphrasing a little....LOL Well, I put a lot of thought into the subject and though it may not be popular I generally feel that keeping enough small bass (1-2lbs) for a camp site dinner or keeping enough small bass for a bag or two in the freezer is fine. However, I truly feel that any bass caught over 3lbs should be thrown back for someone else to catch. (I create my own little slot limit.) Larger fish usually don't taste as good anyway.

I don't know if you guys saw the Bassmasters Elite series on Amistad a few years back when they cut to some locals on TV cleaning 8-10lbs bass. It made me sick. Sometimes I've experienced similar feelings on this site when seeing a huge rack full of LMB on display. However, I applaud their excellent fishing skills and I'm happy for them because I was "that guy" 10 years ago. I fully understand the excitement of catching a ton of bass, cleaning them, and eating them. But now I've had a complete paradigm shift. Think of a "paradigm shift" as a change from one way of thinking to another. It's a revolution, a transformation, a sort of metamorphosis. It just does not happen, but rather it is driven by agents of change.

I happen to LOVE the taste of LMB over any other fresh water fish, even over crappie. But, when I think of eating fish I think of white bass and crappie. I think of LMB as a rare intelligent predator that is a formidable foe. I love tournament fishing and the thrill of the hunt far outweighs my desire to eat them. I probably spend hours a week just thinking about those green fish and how I can out smart them. I want to maximize my chances of catching these awesome fish by returning them to the lake as often and soon as possible. Another point to consider is that some local economies, guides, etc depend on LMB for their living. However, it is perfectly legal to keep five LMB over 14" per bag and as long as it's legal people are going to eat them.

So, is it taboo to eat large mouth bass? In 2011, among most tournament anglers & guides, a resounding yes! Among your everyday fun fisherman/person I'd say no. All I can do is hope for is a paradigm shift and congratulate my fellow fisherman on a nice catch.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:41 PM   #2
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I eat them. Just because I tournament fish for crappie on occasion, should I expect you to throw them all back too?
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:45 PM   #3
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I don't like their taste anyway, but within limits, I usually don't try to get people to think my way unless it is politics. And then it is like teaching a pig to dance. Waste of my time and it ****** off the pig.
If you think killing a large LMB is bad, think about 30yr old Northern Pike. Or that huge 50 lb catfish.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:48 PM   #4
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I don't like their taste anyway, but within limits, I usually don't try to get people to think my way unless it is politics. And then it is like teaching a pig to dance. Waste of my time and it ****** off the pig.
If you think killing a large LMB is bad, think about 30yr old Northern Pike. Or that huge 50 lb catfish.
P.S. I'm more troubled by people who hoard toothpaste. I saw on TV somebody got 4000 tubes of toothpaste for free by using coupons. Now THAT is ridiculous. If you catch a fish and want to eat it...then if its legal it should be your business and not mine.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:56 PM   #5
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I'm a catch and release guy unless they won't make it. Same for reds and trout.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:57 PM   #6
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LMB are highly poisonous when consumed!!! I recommend, to keep from being harmed, to release LMB as soon as possible after photo.

And yes it is hard for a non-tournament fishermen and weekend warriors to understand the benefits and the reasons for catch and release.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:58 PM   #7
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Havent started yet but Im going to Ive got a pond thats overrun with 12- 14" fish that I need to thin out so I can catch some bigguns.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:59 PM   #8
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I like to spearfish bass in thw frio river. Good clean water and clean tasting fish. Most don't make it so I end up keeping them all.

Last edited by Fishin' Soldier; 05-03-2011 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 05-03-2011, 03:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D.L. View Post
Havent started yet but Im going to Ive got a pond thats overrun with 12- 14" fish that I need to thin out so I can catch some bigguns.
I remember doing that at a friends years ago. You could catch a bass on every cast and they were all about 6"-8" long. I caught a lot but gave them away. More then anything just didn't feel like cleaning so many.
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Old 05-03-2011, 03:02 PM   #10
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LMb are a renewable resource. Eat them, and another will take its place. As long as the fishery isn't abused, the natural predator-prey relationships will allow for a healthy fishery.

Small mouth bass are AMAZINGLY delicious!
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