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Old 11-30-2008, 08:19 PM
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Default Cold Weather and Landing Trout

I've recently finished reading several articles on trout feeding habits and have come away impressed by what seems to be the fact that trout are selective feeders for several reasons; not the least of which is energy conservation. In multiple books and articles I recall reading that trout will, in general, only take food where the energy in is greater than the energy out; or a zero-sum game at the very worst.

This got me thinking about fishing and landing fish in cold weather. Even though trout are cold blooded, they have to be expending more energy just to stay alive and healthy in the cold weather than they are in the warm weather. And food; the energy source, is certainly less plentiful in the cold weather. So, given that being hooked and landed is "energy out" for the trout, are we as anglers putting them at greater risk of survival if we fish them and land them in the cold weather?

I've, frankly, always landed fish as quickly as I can. Once I can get the head up its almost always a quick stipping trip to the net. This works well for me for trout in the 12-20" range. Larger trout, granted, take longer to land and area a lot more fun.

But most of my fishing is in small streams where 8-15" is the usual size range. There's ice on some of the streams up here in the Poconos now and there's snow on the ground in many spots. I was thinking of going fishing next weekend, but now I'm thinking that perhaps I should give the trout a rest until Spring.

I am wide open to being talked out of this position!
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Old 11-30-2008, 09:36 PM
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Default Re: Cold Weather and Landing Trout

Pocono,

I always used to quit fishing Slate Run up in Lyco / Clinton Co. the Sunday before the first day of deer season. Up until that time I never had trepidations regarding catching and releasing fish.

After the deer season whenever the mercury rose above a high of 36* for the day I was on a Spring Creek and never left the idea of diminished mortality cross my mind unless one of those big Browns sucked my streamer in as deep as his gill rakers. That always bothered me but not enough to make me not fish.

Fish On Dude....................
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Old 11-30-2008, 11:01 PM
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Default Re: Cold Weather and Landing Trout

Yes trout are selective ,,,,,most times, but I have had more then one might think strike a bright orange indecater, sometimes holding on lonng enough I fight the fish a couple seconds. I have never had one hit green, yellow, or white just orange, go figure.
As far as catch and relese in cold weather, I have caught rainbows in an area of my river relsed them and watched them go right back to were I hooked it and went right back to feeding.
I belive WAY MORE fish are killed by pulling hooks from down deep and not cutting the line close to the mouth, by people not picking fish up right, tearinng up gills and breaking jaws of heavy fish and throwing a fish roughly back or fighting the thing way to long.
Good fishing
Bear
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Old 12-01-2008, 10:08 AM
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Default Re: Cold Weather and Landing Trout

Quote:
Originally Posted by arfishinbear View Post
Yes trout are selective ,,,,,most times, but I have had more then one might think strike a bright orange indecater, sometimes holding on lonng enough I fight the fish a couple seconds. I have never had one hit green, yellow, or white just orange, go figure.
As far as catch and relese in cold weather, I have caught rainbows in an area of my river relsed them and watched them go right back to were I hooked it and went right back to feeding.
I belive WAY MORE fish are killed by pulling hooks from down deep and not cutting the line close to the mouth, by people not picking fish up right, tearinng up gills and breaking jaws of heavy fish and throwing a fish roughly back or fighting the thing way to long.
Good fishing
Bear
A good reason to use a bright orange Stimulator.
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Old 12-02-2008, 08:39 AM
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Default Re: Cold Weather and Landing Trout

LOL yes those work MUCH better then the bright orange deer hair balls I tied .
Bear
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