Lawst Frawg wrote:Here is my mind set, and others may feel differently which Im sure they will. I release fish that I do not want to eat, I dont need to eat bass so why keep them. Never eaten one before, may eat one some day, but if there are bream, catfish, and crappie in freshwater, why keep bass? Maybe it is just my personal respect for the fish. Not saying those that keep bass do not have respect for them, because my favorite and most respected fish are redfish. But I will eat one any chance I get. But I have released more than I have kept.
Boy, you nailed it. Absolutely nailed it. I grew up eating bass; my Grandfather and I would go down to Toledo Bend, catch a 100 12-13" fish in a day, keep a limit, and boy, were they delicious. But in the beginning, Toledo was so overstocked with little fish that you could do that, and being such a HUGE lake (it's 80 miles long for crying out loud) it sustained that level of harvest for a long time. Today, I practice CPR, not because I don't like to eat fish, but because I prefer to be a steward of the resource. I like fishing small, intimate watersheds, and "puttin' 'em back" just works for me.
As Bill Dance says, "Catch a bunch, keep what you need, and let the rest go". Well, I don't want to eat any, so I let them all go, but I also respect other's rights to keep a limit and eat them if they want to. Geeezzzzzzz, I always get mellow this time of the year.