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  #1  
Old 05-26-2006, 10:06 AM
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Question Bluegill Size

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Had a question folks,
I am going fishing this weekend on some inland lakes in the Waterloo rec. area. I normally fish Bass and Pike and do the catch and release thing. My 4yr. old son who goes fishing with me most of the time has been asking to catch and keep some to eat. This is the weekend we are going to do it. The lake I'll be staying on is a bluegill lake, and I havent fished for gills in many years what is the best size for eating. It may be a small as you feel like cleaning but, wanted some other feedback.
Thanks in advance,
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Old 05-26-2006, 10:08 AM
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I don't think I've ever eaten a bluegill I didn't like! Obviously, you'll get more meat off bigger fish, and the small ones can be a pain to clean. But if you stay above 6" (or thereabouts) you should do fine (getting pretty small to fillet, but keeps the kid happy). If you get into some big fish (10+ inches) you shouldn't have anything to worry about (you just might not want to tell anyone about it!).
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Old 05-26-2006, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATB
It may be a small as you feel like cleaning
Yep, that about sums it up.
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Old 05-26-2006, 10:49 AM
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I bought a descaling device at Meijers a few years ago that makes getting the scales off a lot easier and less messy. So, with that tool, I would keep anything 4" or bigger(since your kid wants to keep and eat it) descale it with the device, gut it, take off the fins and head and fry away. My daughter is just content of catching the fish, no matter what the size. She hasn't asked about keeping and eating them. She will eat frozen fish sticks(YUUK) but I can't seem to get her to eat fresh ones.

There is no size limit, so whatever you want to clean and eat is fine. of course like someone mentioned earlier, the bigger they are, the more meat on the bones. But your kid will probably get a kick out of eating a 4"er just as much as a 10"er, it's more his size.
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Old 05-26-2006, 10:54 AM
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I think you gotta go 8 inches or better to keep and eat ,anything smaller than that is almost a waste of time, also this time of year especially with the warm temps this weekend the big one should be on thier beds so if your only getting the 6 inchers move around and try to find the big dadies on or near their beds. Just my two cents!
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Old 05-26-2006, 10:59 AM
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Default frozen fish sticks

Quote:
Originally Posted by dtg
She will eat frozen fish sticks(YUUK)
Arent those made from the stuff left-over from the descaling machine? I would much rather have fresh, but I like fish enough to eat frozen fish sticks even to the horror of my co-workers I eat the fillet o-fish from Micky D's
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Old 05-26-2006, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtg
She will eat frozen fish sticks(YUUK) but I can't seem to get her to eat fresh ones.
Have you tried tricking her?

Fry up some gills in a thick batter when she's not around and put them in one of those styrofoam baskets. Then when she comes in the kitchen tell her you just picked up some fried fish from the Dairy Queen (assuming maybe she would be cool with eating fish from a place like that).

And when she's happily finished eating them, tell her where they really came from.
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Old 05-26-2006, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichP
Have you tried tricking her?

Fry up some gills in a thick batter when she's not around and put them in one of those styrofoam baskets. Then when she comes in the kitchen tell her you just picked up some fried fish from the Dairy Queen (assuming maybe she would be cool with eating fish from a place like that).

And when she's happily finished eating them, tell her where they really came from.
You grossly underestimate MY 3.5 yr old. She is NOT tricked. When she was two, Her Dr. tried to do a little hand trick. she opened one hand to find nothing and immediately went to the other hand to find the object. She is quite the trickster herself. She's smuggled her Chomper(she only gets it at nap and bedtime) in the car in the morning on the way to daycare. About 5 minutes into the car ride, she says, Daaaaaaaddy>>?????? I say What? and she says looooook. I glance into the rearview to see her chewing on her chomper. Then I say HEEEEY, and she hands it over. So she is a clever one, this little girl.

I've got a couple of smaller gills in the freezer, I've been freezing panfish a little each time I go out, some Crappie, gills and a few Pumpkin seeds. i had a couple of nice rock bass on a stringer last weekend but in my abscentmindedness, allowed the prop to set free and behead the lot, ruining the stringer to add injury to insult. "DOOOAAAHHHHH!!!!!!" I said, not 15 minutes earlier to my buddy, remind me to take the fish in Before I start up the motor. This is why I like to use a bucket instead, but forgot to grab it on the way out the door. I'm going to fry some up next week and see if she will eat it. I know she'll like it once she tries it. The trick is to get her to try it in the first place!!!!
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Old 05-26-2006, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtg
i had a couple of nice rock bass on a stringer last weekend but in my abscentmindedness, allowed the prop to set free and behead the lot, ruining the stringer to add injury to insult. "DOOOAAAHHHHH!!!!!!" I said, not 15 minutes earlier to my buddy, remind me to take the fish in Before I start up the motor.
LOL, I've had that happen to me before as well. I usually use the floating baskets these days.

Last time I used a stringer for some nice gills it ended up serving as a fish-kebob for some hungry turtle.
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Old 05-26-2006, 01:34 PM
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I keep generally 7 1/2" +. Only way I keep smaller is if the hook is swallowed and the fish is going to die anyway. I use a #6 long shang gold hook so the little ones have a tough time swallowing. I also press down the barb with pliers so I don't hurt 'em as bad when they come off the hook.

Enjoy-Bluegillin' is a great way to get kids into fishing.

Jim
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Old 05-28-2006, 06:53 PM
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I usually don't keep Them unless they are in the 7" range and up in the summer. when Ice fishing I tend to keep the smaller ones!
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