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Upside down fish in the live well

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Lately there's been a ton of vids. S.m. tubers, forums etc. Live wellin bass for the glory shot at the end of the day. I've noticed ALOT of vids with upside down fish in the well with bass upside down. Are these fish still OK? Will they recoup. It can't be good right? Then they just say hello ya and shut the lid. 

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Bass roll over for a few reasons, the most dangerous to thier survival is stress. When a bass rolls over from stress it's losing it's equilibrium or ability to stay upright a very serious condition. Bass also roll over from over inflated air ladder that expanded do to extreme pressure change, caught in water deeper than 1 atmospheric of pressure change about 30 feet and placed in the livewell. Air bladders can be needled or fizzed to release the gases and deflate the air bladder. The problem with sticking a needle in the air bladder poking a hole is missing vital organs with the needle and the hole must heal before the air bladder can function. Mortality rates are not well documented because the bass sinks to the bottom when released or must swim continuously to maintain a specific depth in lieu of suspending. The over stressed bass that rolled over usually die.

Tom

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I'm not a marine biologist, but a bass that rolls belly-up in my livewell, is a bass headed for the grill.

It's important to be optimistic, but it's just as important to be realistic.

Realistically, every bass that swims away from your boat is not a survivor.

The rate of 'delayed mortality' has been downplayed for years by tournament directors.

 

Roger

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The only fish I have ever seen belly up in the wild is a dead or dying one. Same goes for a live well. I honestly don't think I have ever seen a belly up fish recupe.

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2 hours ago, WRB said:

Bass roll over for a few reasons, the most dangerous to thier survival is stress. When a bass rolls over from stress it's losing it's equilibrium or ability to stay upright a very serious condition. Bass also roll over from over inflated air ladder that expanded do to extreme pressure change, caught in water deeper than 1 atmospheric of pressure change about 30 feet and placed in the livewell. Air bladders can be needled or fizzed to release the gases and deflate the air bladder. The problem with sticking a needle in the air bladder poking a hole is missing vital organs with the needle and the hole must heal before the air bladder can function. Mortality rates are not well documented because the bass sinks to the bottom when released or must swim continuously to maintain a specific depth in lieu of suspending. The over stressed bass that rolled over usually die.

Tom

I caught a fish this weekend that acted really weird. I set the hook and had her in the boat in 5 cranks with the Alabama rig. She couldn't have been deeper than 10' when she bit. Instantly she rolled over in the well and I know it wasn't from exhaustion because there was no fight. I put fin clips on her and she was happy as a lark but never did "normalize", when I tried to let her go after weigh in she wouldn't swim down. The fish was still very lively but remained on the surface. She could have made it but I'm not sure. Any explanation for why the fish did that? My best guess is that she was up in maybe 10' coming up from deeper water to eat bait and I brought her up those extra few feet that did the damage.

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14 hours ago, everythingthatswims said:

I caught a fish this weekend that acted really weird. I set the hook and had her in the boat in 5 cranks with the Alabama rig. She couldn't have been deeper than 10' when she bit. Instantly she rolled over in the well and I know it wasn't from exhaustion because there was no fight. I put fin clips on her and she was happy as a lark but never did "normalize", when I tried to let her go after weigh in she wouldn't swim down. The fish was still very lively but remained on the surface. She could have made it but I'm not sure. Any explanation for why the fish did that? My best guess is that she was up in maybe 10' coming up from deeper water to eat bait and I brought her up those extra few feet that did the damage.

Dunno. But I've had a few that have acted strangely after capture -one this spring in fact which reminded me of another I'd caught in the very same (and very shallow) spot a few years ago. The difficulty with equilibrium and obvious liveliness of the fish made me wonder if there wasn't neurological damage, possibly from the hook. The brain, eyes, and supporting nerve fibers lie not far from the roof of the mouth.

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8 minutes ago, Paul Roberts said:

Dunno. But I've had a few that have acted strangely after capture -one this spring in fact which reminded me of another I'd caught in the very same (and very shallow) spot a few years ago. The difficulty with equilibrium and obvious liveliness of the fish made me wonder if there wasn't neurological damage, possibly from the hook. The brain, eyes, and supporting nerve fibers lie not far from the roof of the mouth.

Last fall I killed one when the hook on the jighead I was using hit something important, I guess something similar could have happened

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My best guess.

 

Shame. But, I think we're all pretty conscientious. And, I must say it's darn rare IME.

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A bass that goes belly up in a livewell will most likely die soon,either in the same day or a couple days later(delayed mortality).

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Smallmouth tend to do this I use catch and release and will use fun clips if needed, last is to fizz the fish if caught deep 20+.

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Ive been fishing tournaments for 15 years and I would say more often than not, bigger fish will go upside down, or on their side in the livewell. Almost every tournament this happens, and I have never weighed in a dead fish. All my fish swim away after they are weighed. I use a live well treatment, and fizz fish that need to be fizzed. Never had an issue. 

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On 4/3/2017 at 8:13 PM, IntroC said:

The only fish I have ever seen belly up in the wild is a dead or dying one. Same goes for a live well. I honestly don't think I have ever seen a belly up fish recupe.

I agree that it is likely they are goners.  But I have been able to revive stressed fish by holding them upright in the livewell for a while.  I will also dump some Catch and Release (or the equivalent) into the livewell at the same time.  It seems to be smallies more so than largemouth, but sometimes you hook a fish that just seems like it's not going to make it, it starts rolling over almost immediately. I have used those ice fishing weights and clipped them on the lower fins of the fish to keep them upright in the livewell.  After a while you can take the weights off and usually the fish recoups. It's not 100% effective, but I think it's better than just letting them die in the livewell. I have had pretty good success using that technique.  And, of course, the Catch and Release additive helps, too.

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