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tarpon landing guidelines?

permit_mepermit_me Posts: 1,197 Officer
Yesterday while tarpon fishing we saw a guide and a client hook and, after an inexcusably long battle with what looked like a 70-80 lb fish, land the fish. He pulled the fish up onto the gunnel by the gill cover and clavicle to take pictures. I am sure that fish had a rough go of it once released. Not how I would expect to show clients how to land a tarpon.
Fortunately, I was taught by guides when first learning how to land tarpon to keep them in the water and grab them by the lower lip/jaw while removing the hook. That is what I have shown others as well. Conservation of the fish is foremost. A quick landing and release will always improve the health and chance for survival of the fish.

FWC regs say that a fish over 40 can not be removed from the water. What does that mean - if the tail is in the water is the fish technically still in the water?


  • ChillyChilly Posts: 590 Officer
    Following this thread...

    But I will add- I say the "majority rule" can apply here... If the majority of the fish is in the water then he is in. If a majority of the fish is out of the water then he is out.

    Obviously I know this is not how the law is written but let us apply a bit of common sense to our resources.

    CHEAP BAIT! Try our NE FL Bait Co-op:

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