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Author Topic: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.  (Read 1534 times)

Animal Chin

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Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« on: October 08, 2011, 12:25:50 PM »

Sorry if this has been answered thoroughly before.

I gutted my first trout last night, thanks to youtube. Pretty nifty, ripped the whole internals out in one piece after slitting up the belly and stopping an inch from the mouth.

Haven't caught any coho, but I'm being an optimist.  The newbie question:

Do you gut a salmon the same way you would a 1lb trout? In other words, is a fish a fish and what works for one species would work for another (larger)?

I understand you should bleed out a salmon prior to gutting/dressing, but should you bleed out trout as well?

And finally... does bonking just stun the fish, or does it kill the fish. The reason I ask is that I gave the trout a good smack and one or two more for good measure. Even then, it still flopped around after a few seconds, to the point of falling off the ledge and back into the water. Is this a death rattle, or am I being limp-wristed with the bonk.

Thanks. Much appreciated.
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DanJohn

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Re: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2011, 12:44:03 PM »

I believe its the same. The point of bleeding the salmon is to not let the blood spoil any meat. I would assume the same for a trout, although a much smaller amount. Gutting is the same. Gills and organs out and gone! Bonking merely stuns them, unless you really give em a good whack right on the brain, it very well may kill them. On trout again, smaller scale. On a Salmon, you give a good shot to the head, and you can see their eye roll from a downward position to looking straight out in the middle. At the point, you want the heart still beating so you can throughly bleed it (bleed it in the water too, that way the blood does not coagulate and clot up, but freely flows out)

As far as the flopping. If it is actively moving and flopping numerous times, I would be sad for making him suffer. One flip of the body I would consider simply a muscle reaction. I am not all knowing here at all, but this is what Ive picked up. But I did have one pink that was bonked, then once more JUST TO BE SURE, then slit open, gills removed, and FLIP! A solid 30 seconds after bleeding. Scared the crap out of me. Again though, if the eyes are right in the middle of the socket, he is done.
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mistermongz

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Re: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2011, 12:52:29 PM »

LOL i dont bonk i just go straight out and pull the gills...
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canso

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Re: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2011, 12:54:58 PM »

very much the same, but you can remove the gills aswell, so all the bloody organs are gone.
bonking just stuns, the heart still pumps and somtimes they can still flop, with a salmon I have a big swing, then grab a gill and tare it out to bleed. my bonker has some wieght, which helps.

don't forget the extra blood at the spine, just give it a slit with the knife and scoop it out with a spoon or the knife handle.

Matt

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Re: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2011, 10:58:30 PM »

Treat salmon and trout exactly the same.  When you land your fish you intend on keeping, reach in the gill plate and hook a couple gill rakers with your fingers and pull/twist them out.  You can bonk your fish as well if you don't want the fish flipping around.  When you bonk it, it will shivers a bit and then lie still.  Once bled, the fish is fine to leave in a cool place for a while, either in the shallows or up on shore out of the sun. 

Either the provincial guys or the feds require that the head be left on for ID purposes until you get home, but I prefer cleaning my fish at the river so I don't have to deal with the guts at home.  I slit the fish open from the anal opening forward and then remove the guts and esophagus as one and any remaining gill rakers.  Make sure to get the kidney, its the dark ribbon that runs the length of the open body cavity along the backbone.  Blood/blood organs spoil at a faster rate that flesh, so its important to remove both thoroughly if your fish is to stay in good shape for the table.  

Rinse your fish off and put it in a fish bag (cheap, stylish, convenient, available at tackle shops) for the ride home.  Apparently, garbage bags have de-odorizer impregnated into the plastic that is unhealthy when it leaches into your catch.  I don't know whether this is true, and I've used garbage bags lots in the past, but fish bags are simply more convenient.
« Last Edit: October 08, 2011, 11:04:23 PM by Matt »
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NiceFish

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Re: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2011, 11:04:04 PM »

I personally keep my catch in a potato sack/coffee bean bag, it's great because it breathes and you can dip it in the water to keep the fish cool, also can be washed in the washing machine and dried in the dryer and ready for the next outing.
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Matt

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Re: Gutting or Dressing a Catch: trout vs salmon.
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2011, 11:07:14 PM »

I personally keep my catch in a potato sack/coffee bean bag, it's great because it breathes and you can dip it in the water to keep the fish cool, also can be washed in the washing machine and dried in the dryer and ready for the next outing.


You can also wet the burlap and leave it onshore.  The evaporation process that will occur will actually remove heat from the fish in effect refrigerating it.

Nice fence btw, looks good!
« Last Edit: October 09, 2011, 04:00:19 PM by Matt »
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