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CrappieMagnet

How Big Is Too Big?

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I'm just curious about when you people think it's too big to keep.Tablefare vs. C&R.
For instance will i keep a walleye that's up to 3 pounds and put the larger ones back, for i consider them the spawners for the next generation of fish.And for crappie, i keep for tablefare the 8's and nines and throw the larger one's back for future bigen's(larger fish).Pike...none,Bluegill..the 6-8's and that's about it...

Just curious what other people think?

An interesting topic perhaps?

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and i might add...i know a person who actually ate a 10 3/4 lb. walleye...a few years back...i wasn't too happy with em'...just me perhaps and the way i look at the great sport of fishing..

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I don't like to keep any Walleyes that are over 2 pounds. I have seen people cleaning some walleyes that I would love to have on my wall and it did bother me a little. I have never seen so many 8 pound plus Walleyes cleaned as I did over a two day period on Devils Lake. I would rather eat smaller walleyes and not have as much meat than to keep and eat the larger ones. They don't taste nearly as good as the smaller ones. Just my opinion, though.

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I usually only keep 15-17 and usually only 1-2 for dinner. I have ate a 14" before and a 20" before. It's not because I think thats what everyone should keep it's only my preference.

Brian

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For me always depends on the species and lake. On some lakes my ranges are different. generally,
Eyes, eat them 3 lbs and under usually.
Gills, eat the around 7" size, release all 8"+
Crappies-I like the 9-11" range
Pike, love to eat the 2-3lbers
Perch-jumbos

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the size to eat .. now this could get real interesting .. myself , if i am fishing a lake in the farm belt areas or a few of the rivers i will gernerally eat the 12 to 14 inch walleyes . other lakes up to 20 inchs . i will admit i have put a few big ones under the knife . this was ONLY DONE FOr SPEFIC REASONS ... the most recent one one was 28-1/4" very fat fish .. the reason ? my daughter just 2 days before said to me that i hadnt gotten us a walleye dinner in a long time . can you catch us one ? it didnt look good with fishing crappies all winter long and 4 days of season left. i got it fishing crappies 8' below the ice in 35feet of water .. when i got it out my buddys said going to release right ? i just put my head down and said ,, well thats what i am decideing and told him what kate said . so i Kept it along with the limit crappies . the other time was Parents were making dive from the range to visit .. they rarely fish let along catch anything ,, so they got a walleye that was 26" with a limit of crappies ..
Crappies sizes all depends ,, i wont even try to toss those little dinks back that are pulled from deep water . why stuff them down the hole to watch them 1/2 float away under the ice and be wasted? i cant count how many 16" and under crappies from bowstring, red and many other honey hole lakes .i do BTW have a white crappie on the wall that was 16-1/2" 2 lb 12oz.
pike ,, wont eat them unless from a lake with Very cold water ( mine pits ) ..
Sunnies ate all sizes but havent got my 1 ponder as of yet .
Never eat bass and rarely eat perch .
So in closeing this long one out ,, for me there is special exceptions .

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This can be debated forever, and has already other places. But I really can't remember eating a bad fish from hard water. I have also eaten a 15# northern from the Oahe right along with 2# walleyes, no difference. Was in very early spring, ice just away from shores. I think to release is an individual choice and is primarily for someone to catch it again when it may be even larger. Most old fish aren't as successful spawning as their younger counterparts 10# vs 4#.
Just my 2 cents

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How would you feel if the DNR went to a state wide slot limit to take the guess work out of should I keep the fish or not. I know I am probably opening pandoras box here but just a thought. That way everyone would keep the same size of fish and release the same. Except for Mille Lacs where the regulation changes daily. Personally I keep walleyes up to 20 inches pike up to 26 inches crappies up to 10 inches and sunnies up to 9 inches and all perch because it seems like I never catch a perch over 10 inches anyway. Just my two cents

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Walters between 15-19" and that's if I feel like cleaning them and I hate cleaning fish. I took 1 last year and 2 so far this year. I won't keep crappies or other fish besides trout and the trout are only from stocked ponds/lakes.

Pretty much a C/R Bass guy.

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I keep everything! Big walleyes, little sunnies, carp, suckers, sturgeon, eel pout, big pike, heck I even eat my left over minnows! Just Kidding! As long as you eat it, who cares. I personally don't eat fish, therefore I don't keep them. I've kept two fish in recent memory, and those are both on my wall, a sunny and crappie. I would have let them go but they didn't have very good replica mounts back then. Fish are a natural resource for us to enjoy, wether it's catching or eating.

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I personally fish mostly for sport and keep a an smaller eye or a few crappies now and then. I have no large objection as long as the fish kept is put to good use...however just for a point of information, large fish does contribute largely to spawning. A misconception is that large, say 10 lb wallyes have poor quality spawn. This is in part true, a higher percentage of their eggs are "poor" for spawning but the large numbers of eggs these fish carry more than make up for it. I like to see these fish returned to the lake.

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I know for a fact that if people knew how to properly de-bone northern pike, besides a little slime, most everyone would keep them. They taste as good as anything, and you don't even have to target them to catch them.

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The DNR fish consumption advisories are a good guide as to which size fish you eat. Some of those mid-size eyes and pike can have a fair amount of toxins in them.

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Here's my 2 cents worth
Walleye up to 20
Crappie up to 11
Gill up to 8
Perch up to 12

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For years trout hatcheries and state fisheries agencies assumed that larger fish were better spawners and that the genetic value of larger fish was greater than that of smaller fish--that is, that the bigger ones were the ones we wanted reproducing. There is a lot of evidence that in some species larger specimens generate more offspring, but lately there has been a lot of doubt about the basic assumption that a larger fish is more valuable to the resource. In some specific cases--hatchery trout, for example--the value of larger fish to a stocking program has been disputed and hatcheries are beginning to use smaller fish. Anybody have any insight? If it were true it would reduce the supposed value of C&R for the largest fish and justify slots.

ice

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