Catch and release fishing tips

Releasing the fish you catch can help sustain and build the population of wild fish. Here are a few tips for ensuring fish have the best chance of survival.


Use barbless hooks or flatten the barb on the hook before using a fly for the first time. This makes the hook much easier to remove and lessens the potential injury to the fish’s mouth.


Use either needle-nose pliers or forceps to gently remove the hook from the fish’s mouth.


If the fish has swallowed the hook, or if the hook is set too deeply, cut the line and release the fish. The hook will dissolve over time without harm to the fish.

If the hook is in the gills, the throat or an artery, the fish’s chances of survival are greatly reduced. If it’s legal, keep the fish. Also, if a fish is bleeding, keep it if it’s legal to do so.


Minimize the amount of time the fish is out of the water. Once the hook is removed or the line is cut, gently hold the fish in the water, pointing upstream, until it can swim away on its own.


Comments about “Catch and release fishing tips”

  1. Pack21 dude says:

    I love fishing with my grandpa and I’ll bet he will love this tip cause he loves nature and tries to make the fish feel no pain at all.

  2. asdfghjkl; says:

    my bro cought a brow on a fly the other day

  3. asdfghjkl; says:

    and a 2 pound brown the day befor!!!

  4. asdfghjkl; says:

    i just cought a 17 pound king on lake Ontario yesterday!!!

  5. twedle dee says:

    I think that these suggesttions are only for beginners really, I go fishing quite often, but, I would not follow these rules, but that is just my opinion.

  6. tyrell1111 says:

    to stop it from wiggiling squese its gills together

  7. WS says:

    you NEED gloves when handling sunfish

  8. Cow says:

    Instead of using gloves, just wet your hands.Circle hooks also help because it hooks on the side of the mouth.

  9. nalc says:

    one kind of fish buries and starves itself if you release it

  10. skyknight says:

    this is about sport fishing isnt it for eagle scout i need to know how to prepare it to eat

  11. fisher says:

    A tip for fishing is even if you don’t catch anything have fun.

  12. bob with an oboe says:

    If the hook gets caught in the gills or eye and the chance of survival is low, break the fish’s neck. If you do it right, it is a quick and un-painful way to put it out of it’s misery.

  13. fisher 08 says:

    I love to go fishing and I caught about 13 fish.

  14. fishy says:

    I have only caught 4 fish but I still like it a lot anway.

  15. swizzy#1 says:

    thats cool……….. i caught a 7 pound fish one time and it loocked like it should of been like 25 pounds….

  16. slifer96 says:

    THank you for the good tip

  17. bass master4444 says:

    I love fishing!!!

    I always catsh and release.

    The biggest fish i ever caught was an 18 inch largemouth bass!

    (I’ve also caught some 14-16in. pickerel)

  18. peanut says:

    awesome! i love thispage!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. dj says:

    thats nice oh yes

  20. mets says:

    it kinda hard to get it out of the eye trust me on this one guy

    you’ll have kill the fish

  21. oakway vol.fire dept says:

    what if you pay 6.50 for your fishing lure nobody would do that.

  22. mustangfisherdog2400 says:

    fishing is fun. i have never kept a fish that i have caught, but i have only caght seven fish i think and they were all 3 – 4 inch bluegill

  23. ausman08 says:

    thats cool i just getting into fishing

  24. Ghostrider13 says:

    I been fishing at Lake Ontario for 3 years now and have only caught 9 fish.

  25. boo boo says:

    I think these tips are very helpful

  26. Mr.Meaty says:

    If you dull the tips enoughf to not seriously injur the fish you wouldn`t catch any thing!!!!!

  27. arod says:

    i think they need to tell you how to hold the fish without its gills cutting you.

  28. aar says:

    my dad needs to know this !

  29. jabenero says:

    whats the easiest way to catch a fish?

    Have some one throw it at you

  30. jabenero says:

    People need to wear gloves

  31. jabenero says:

    fishing is part of survival

  32. jabenero says:

    I hope all people know this fact

  33. brink man says:

    fishin is my favorite hobbey im down at the pond at least twice a day

  34. Z man says:

    The last time i went fishing my great grandmother was hooked in the thumb, but i caught baby bass and a normal bass.

  35. outdoor guy 75 says:

    Fishing is great I love to fish rivers lakes ect. sometimes its easy to get the hook out with your hand but sometimes if its hard don’t hesitate use a tool

  36. the big one says:

    wearing gloves can still remove the slime. so that you dont remove the slime you need wet hands. if you are affrade to touch them then wear gloves that have been soaked in water.

  37. lil e says:

    why put the fish back keep it and eat it

  38. clay skar says:

    i like fishing i cought one two days ago

  39. nate says:

    I like fishing

  40. Mr. Myesterious says:

    When you catch a fish always be gentle, and don’t hook yourself!

  41. fishin' 152 says:

    Use gloves so u do not remove the slime , it is the fishes way of protecting its self from harmful parasites . If u don’t have gloves get your hands wet before handling fish please.

  42. ? says:

    another good way to get hold of a fish:

    use a washcloth/ something like it to grip it

  43. ian says:

    Fishing is FUN!

  44. wolf 2 eagle says:

    if u’re in a lake, gently pull the fish back n forth till it swims away. and don’t toss it in the water; put it in the water gently.

  45. one who makes white smoke says:

    In the title of the passage, it doesn’t say if the tips will work for all fish species or for just one species.

  46. Survivor12 says:

    I still think catching fish is mean :(

  47. lok et meh says:

    use gloves if you are holding a fish with stingers

  48. ben says:

    actually dont use gloves, just make your hands wet it doesnt take the fishes slime away from it

  49. froggy says:

    If you want to now how to hold a fish without getting hurt then hold your thumb and your finger on the fishes mouth.

  50. love guns says:

    you half to use gloves

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