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What to Do If You Plan on Keeping the Fish You Catch

HomeEducationalWhat to Do If You Plan on Keeping the Fish You Catch

Fishing can be a great hobby. It gets you outdoors and moving. You get to enjoy the scenic nature of your surroundings and enjoy the sound of moving water. 

You may even benefit from keeping and eating the fish you catch. If that’s your plan, there are some things you’ll need to do.

Check With Local Regulations

Before you head out to catch fish, you’ll need to check to see what you’re allowed to keep. The lakes and rivers that fish call home are studied and managed by wildlife organizations governed by groups like the U.S. Department of Interior. 

They are the ones that set the rules about how many fish you can keep, size limits, what species you’re allowed to keep, and where and when you’re allowed to fish. Make sure you’re familiar with your local regulations so you know what you can keep and what you can’t. Check to see what your state’s fishing license regulations are too.

Store Fish Properly

Once you’ve caught a fish you can keep, you need to store it properly. Proper storage is critical to minimizing bacteria growth and preserving the fish’s flavor. Dress the fish quickly after catching it. Fresh fish should be kept on ice until you can get them to a refrigerator. 

The ice should be crushed or flaked, not cubed. Keep the drain plug open so water can drain away from the fish. That will help prevent the water from spoiling the flavor of the fish. Once you’re home, you can store the fish in the refrigerator or freezer. Portion it into meal-sized portions before storing it. Properly cleaned and wrapped fish can last 2 days in the refrigerator, but 3-12 months in the freezer, so choose your storage location appropriately.

Prepare Fish Properly

If your fish is frozen, thaw it in the refrigerator or under running water. If you want to marinate your fish before you cook it, do so in the refrigerator. Fish should be cooked until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celsius). It should have a flaky texture.

Fishing to keep the fish you catch for yourself can be a great way to supplement your diet. Fish are generally considered quite healthy, thanks to the abundance of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins D and B2, calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, iodine, magnesium, and potassium in them. Just make sure you know what you’re allowed to keep and how to store and prepare the fish properly. That will allow you to safely consume the fish you catch so you can enjoy the benefits of including them in your diet.

Did you enjoy reading this article? Here’s more to read. How to Protect Your Floors When You Have Pets

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