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dairyman

minimum bass size

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I wouldn't ever keep one...and I'm sure many others will repeat that.

Now hypothetically if I were stuck on a lake that only had bass in it in the middle of nowhere and needed to eat bass to survive I would fry up 12-inchers.

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I don't ever keep large mouths - don't find them good eating around here.

I have eaten Smallies when camping in the BWCA - They are very good eating IMO. Not sure what size, but it would have to be a decent fillet, otherwise you might as well target crappies or sunnies.

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I.M.H.O. The bass around here aren't very good this time of year.....warm water=mushy meat. I'm with everyone else, throw the bass back and keep some crappies or sunnies, now your talking about a good meal.

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Blah Blah Blah don't eat bass. crazy Keep a size you can get a decent fillet off of 13 inch large and 14 inch smallie. I don't eat bass personally but know a lot of people who do. They say they taste good.

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I'm with TOOMUCHFUN I dont see why people dont keep bass if you mixed bass and walleye on a pan sheet and tell people to eat them the average person isn't going to have a clue. I was going to say 12 or 13 inch largy and smallie.

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I've eaten bass once or twice, and while it isn't walleye, it isn't that bad. I do throw 100% of them back though.

Crappie's really aren't that great in the summer for the same reason.

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All fish taken from warm shallow water get mushy, not just bass, but it has more to do with storage and care after harvest than the acctual water temp....10-14" would be the size to keep, but if you want some to eat, look towards spring and fall, or have a cooler with tons of ice, and get them on it right away...

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I would have to disagree with depth making fish mushy comment the suspended crappies in the basin are still mush down about 20 in 40 FOW in the summer. The only way to do crappies in the summer is pickling those bad boys. I always throw my keepers in a cooler full of ice. Sorry for the thread hijack also.

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kg2    0

I agree with toomuchfun. Crappies in the winter are even a little mushy and they fall apart in the pan. I would suspect bass are the same. They all go back.

Sunnies, perch, and walleyes have nice firm meat. Northerns, also.

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Right, those fishing sitting in a livewell with warm water and floating around belly up is much better for them....

I have never had much of a problem with mushy fish as long as I take the time to care for them properly, no sloshing around in the livewell in warm water and no sitting in a bucket waiting to be cleaned. Maybe it's just me...

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I wasn't saying handling wasn't important. I should have been more specific the deep fish that I have even thrown in the ice right away like bass and crappie caught in the summer deep or shallow still seem mushy even if properly handled is all.

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I don't eat bass but regarding the crappie thing I have found that if you put the fillets in a plastic bag and put them in theh firdge or even on ice in the fridge for a night they firm up and are just fine......

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I've eaten some great bass in my life. However, I usually will not eat them unless I'm camping up north and can't get any northern's or walleye. If you cook it in with any of the coveted table fish, you can't tell much of a difference. In fact I bet 95% of you couldn't tell much difference between bass, walleye and pike fried over the fire in a pan with in a little butter with some lemon pepper smile

I just like to release them so I can catch them another day!

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This is from a die hard bass angler...

Bass are not all that bad, smaller fish are better, but it really all depends on the fishery.

We need to keep this in mind however. Bass do a fairly decent job of keeping their numbers in check, the MN DNR spends very little if any on re-stocking programs. MN DNR spends magor bucks to stock walleye, and some on Muskie and Trout...

I have no problem with someone keeping 3 or so 12-13" fish for the table. Often times its even healthy for the fishery. Its when peole keep numbers of spawners, 14-18" fish that can hurt the fishery. can some lakes handle that, sure, but for the most part, no.

If I may suggest, if you plan to eat it, keep it, put it on ice right away and eat it before you freeze it.. Bass can be a mushy fillet to eat, not as firm as a walleye or pike, its often good made into cakes or baked. But please I again urge you to keep the smaller 12 -13 inch fish as they are best and dont hurt the fishery as bad.

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I never keep bass in the summer/open water season. however, I have kept the occational bass ice fishing and have found them to be very good.

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I too am a die hard bass guy, but I also started fishing when I was just a baby down south. I do C&R most of the time, but on occasion I will keep a few, generally they will be in the 12-14" range. My grandma loves bass and a few other people I know love bass. When I keep em it is generally premeditated to invite friends and family over for a fish fry.

The key to keeping any fish in the summer is to fill your livewell with ice before you head to the lake if you are planning to keep em. Toss em on ice right away rather than in warm water. This will help keep em nice and firm as best as possible. Not just bass, but panfish, walleyes, catfish, everything.

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I've eaten bass and it tastes just fine. I've kept smallies out of the croix and they taste great. Keep the smaller ones and leave the breaders. I don't understand why so many are so protective of bass. They are fun to catch but fry them up with some shore lunch and they make a heck of a sammy!!

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the trick I use (a cooler I coverted to livewell) is to fill it full of cold tap water before I head out. (Like the ice in the livewell thing) They stay cold and the water kinda filters the fish as they are in it most of the day. my $.02

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