Why We Do What We Do
Guest Blog by: Chris McKee 3/18/2014
Why we do what we do.
For me the need to fish seems to be deep rooted in a predatory instinct that needs to be fueled on a regular basis. The heightened awareness to the senses, like the immediate focus in the direction of the sound of surface water being disturbed to the different smells of the water and how they provided before in that particular smell. I am not claiming superhuman powers here just the normal god given senses and an awareness to how they become part of each fishing trip I take.
I am blessed with a family that would rather eat seafood than beef, chicken or pork. This justifies my hobby, (such a hollow term for it) to some degree and falls within the predatory instinct but there are sustainable practices that will allow for both my needs and that of my prey.
Wolves do not trophy hunt. They seek out the weaker and abundant prey which naturally allows their prey to continue to promulgate and ensure a future harvest. We not only have instinct but science to assist us in our endeavors. Larger fish have more babies, more babies mean more fish and larger populations to prey upon. Some of our quarry are very prolific and other are slow to repopulate. As shaved apes itís our duty to seek the balance and harvest only what we will consume and will allow the population to maintain.
Oh no is this jerk writing this getting all sensitive and tree huggy over trophy fishing? No, I am actually all for it with an idea I hope you will consider in the harvesting of fish. Today there are techniques that not only allow the trophy fish to live but provide the angler with a more lifelike wall mount and hopes of catching a larger fish someday. There are taxidermistsí who can recreate your catch in lifelike detail and in any pose you want with just a photo and the measurements of the fish. Some of these trophies can be seen in stores like Cabellas or Bass pro. The best looking ones are this style. Also if this fish is a harvestable species such as a stripper, Mahi Mahi, Salmon and you choose to eat it this practice will allow for that as well.
I have one regret, toward the need to keep every trophy fish caught, from my high school days. I fished almost every day during high school. My family ate well from my fishing but I also fished for fun and released far more fish than I actually harvested. One day while fishing for steelhead in the river I hooked into and after what seemed like a day and a half landed a 12+ pound Bull Trout. These were about as common as Bigfoot and seen about as often. This fish was within ounces of being a state record and at 17 it felt like the small town I was living in was having a parade as I dragged the fish around to allow everyone a poke at it. At that time everyone was convinced the fish was a Dolly Varden because the separate distinction of the Bull Trout had not been identified yet. Anyways there are 2 things I have from this day. The memory of catching such a beautiful fish and the guilt of not having the maturity to have taken a picture then releasing the fish.
Anyone reading this and knowing a Taxidermist in Texas who does this type of taxidermy please add a comment so we can support this art and continue to trophy fish. Catch and release only some in the grease.
Have lived in all over the United States and served in the Marines in Asia.
I have fished all these regions for almost anything that will bite Salmon, Trout, Walleye, Yellow Perch,Cusk, Carp, Crappie, Blue Gill, White Bass Pickerel, Cod, Rock Cod, Halibut, Flownder and many others. By the graces of the almighty it came to be I am now and plan on forever more being a citizen of the Great State of Texas. My favorite fish to go after are catfish especially the big Blues. Pound for pound I believe they are the strongest I have ever had the pleasure to fish for. I am also fond of White Bass and someday soon hope to start catching alligator gar.
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