Colorado Fisherman Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Born & bred surrounded by ocean I learned to clean fish on the shorelines and return what wasn't going home back to the sea. Crabs, shrimp, eels, & fish could be observed feasting on what was thrown back.

Is this practice OK in lakes & streams? How about burying the guts & stuff to nourish the soil? Please advise this beginning fresh water fisher who wants to do the right thing.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,399 Posts
It really depends on what state your fishing at or what lakes your fishing on.  Colorado has a chumming law and if they consider this chuming then you will be fined.  But the very first time I fished in Colorado my buddy I went with gutted his trout as he caught them, and I heard this helps bleed them and get rid of the fishy taste.  I still dont do this since I fillet a trout without gutting the fish unless I'm interested in what its been eating. 
I think in Colorado its only illegal at certain lakes example: http://plpoa.com/fishing.htm and some lakes provide fish cleaning stations at them.
I'm from Nebraska originally and we use to camp right on the river/lake banks like less then 8 foot away sometimes, when we cleaned fish everything we didnt eat went to feed the turtles or back on our hooks for catfish.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
On my first trip to CO 3 years ago, I went up to Gross Res to sample a mountain "lake" environment, and was surprised to see...well, nothing alive in the water. No fish, crustaceans, nymphs, water weeds - barren. The tropical ocean bottom is totally covered with life forms swimming, crawling, or stuck to it, not to mention the fish species occupying all levels above it. Throw in the leavings from cleaning fish and what isn't savaged while sinking will end up in a crabs claws or be dragged into an eel hole. So at Gross I wondered, hmm, in the absence of scavengers, maybe tossing entrails into the water would be an act of pollution? Well, all my trout since then were released, and the few walleye I kept went home with me intact, but I still wondered about on site cleaning.

So thanks guys, for your input Guess I'll have to find out what a cleaning station is.

Grumpa
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,568 Posts
Some areas have outdoor counters (fillet/gutting areas) complete with trash can, running water, and hoses to wash flesh down the drain...like outdoor fish cleaning houses that the resorts in Northern Minnesota have...some places like Spinney and Lake John have resident sea gulls and pelicans that will almost come up and beg if they see you cleaning a fish...it is quite the sight to see a pelican injest a 20 inch plus filleted carcus (sp?) of a trout in one big swallow!!!...20 inches is the minimum size you can keep at Spinney...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,399 Posts
Grumpa, they have cleaning stations on every ocean pier I ever fished on, I've never been to hawaii but I'm sure they have them on the piers there too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
ePic, Hawaii doesn't have any fishing piers that I know of.  The closest thing would be the harbor docks but after 9/11 Hilo Harbor which is nearest to where I live and had a significant regular crew of night fishers was permanantly closed to any fishing due to security concerns. Really sad for all the retired people who lost the only spot they could access to enjoy their favorite pastime.

But, not to worry, Grumpa will make every effort to seek out and utilize cleaning stations on his next CO trip. None being present he will take home intact what is chosen for the table.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
173 Posts
It isn't just the entrails and fish parts people leave laying around. They also leave thier containers of chicken liver and other baits strewn about. One day i was at Chatfield, and someone had left a package of beef liver laying on the beach close to where i was fishing. There was no trash can around where i was, so i left it there and was going to dispose of it when i left. A big huge Raven came swooping down and grabbed the liver and flew off with it. So there are lots of other critters around lakes and water holes that don't mind a free meal. I personally do not like to find dead things and fish guts laying at the same place where i want to fish. It draws flies and bees which can really be a nuisence while your trying to fish plus it stinks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
I was criticized by a game warden once for showing up at a boat dock with already gutted fish. They've got regs against tossing guts in the res.

My personal feeling is that anything that is good nutrition should not be wasted. Now I just eat the guts on the boat to stay out of trouble. ::)

( honest, I'm not lying! )
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
173 Posts
:eek: Oh my God you eat the guts ? You should be on fear factor! HA HA HA! Or at least show that one to the game warden!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
804 Posts
I fish a lot of high country wilderness streams and lakes. I clean my fish then leave their entrails along the bank. The "Camp Robbers".. A.K.A. Gray Jay for you that live in Rio linda.... and sometimes ermin, clean them up in a hurry. You have to be careful though, black bears are especially fond of that scent and if you leave them to close to camp you may get a visitor.  ;D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Thanks Ouray for your back country suggestion. The hike in wild trout experience is on my agenda and since guts in the water isn't a sound practice its good to know that there are wilderness scavengers around who'd appreciate a free meal left on the banks. I wasn't enthused about packing out a bag of fish guts, expecially since most of them leak.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
804 Posts
Grumpa said:
Thanks Ouray for your back country suggestion. The hike in wild trout experience is on my agenda and since guts in the water isn't a sound practice its good to know that there are wilderness scavengers around who'd appreciate a free meal left on the banks. I wasn't enthused about packing out a bag of fish guts, expecially since most of them leak.
Anytime. Let me know if you ever need any suggestions on where to go. I would be happy to share!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
472 Posts
When I am camping and fishing, I'll treat the fish guts like I treat my human waste.

If there isn't a proper receptacle, I bury it out of sight and mind-as far away from the camp as possible.

Is this acceptable on both counts? Will "Ranger Rick" write me up for this?

I want to do what is right by the law and willing to change some of my "oldschool" practices if they could cause some problems for me or others.

Thanks to everyone for their advice and input.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,568 Posts
If backcountry camping and your buddy outfishes you...put the guts under his pillow that way the bears will bother him and he will be too tired to outfish you the next day...pouring bacon grease around his tent will work even better!
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top