FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

When is a snapper too big?

Page  12>
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Buggar-me Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: When is a snapper too big?
    Posted: 03 Jun 2019 at 6:23pm
Buggar-me View Drop Down
Silver
Silver


Joined: 06 Apr 2012
Status: Offline
Points: 119
We all catch snapper. So at what point ( or length) does it become to big to keep?
I don't keep anything under 35, and have caught a few of a decent size of around 55 cm.but always hear the term "pannie". Looking at some photos on here and sizes caught, am I putting back some good fish?
I catch to feed a couple of us so never overcatching.
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (6) Likes(6)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jun 2019 at 6:39pm
The Tamure Kid View Drop Down
Platinum
Platinum


Joined: 25 Aug 2015
Location: Auckland
Status: Offline
Points: 2433
I've heard two reasons for putting back bigger snapper - say 65+cm:

1. they are "our breeders" - presumably based on thinking that a bigger fish has better genetics as it's stayed alive for longer, plus either lays more eggs or produces more milt than a small fish (not sure how scientifically valid those reasons are, say for keeping one or two big fish versus say taking 7 x 30-50cm snapper out of the breeding population?)

2. they don't taste as good as younger fish. Hard to judge, but the 18.5lber I killed and cooked was a bit tougher in texture. In my view, very thick fillets are harder to cook to perfection, which is one other aspect to consider.

There's one main reason for keeping them: if they are caught in water 20m+ deep, when they tend to get 'the bends' being wound to the surface and aren't likely to survive release (according to most research I've seen). Better to keep them in that situation.

I've heard arguments against both points 1 & 2 above, but have put back two large fish (68cm, 69cm) that I've caught recently - for a mix of those two reasons (they were caught in 10-16m, so were fine to release).

I don't think anyone has the right to tell others they should release a big fish, particularly if the person with the big fish hasn't caught many, and if they intend to do the fish justice by using it all.

I get a bit pi$$ed off when someone posts a pic on Facebook of a big snapper and other people post "I hope you released that breeder" or similar.
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote JustAnotherSpearo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jun 2019 at 7:01pm
JustAnotherSpearo View Drop Down
Gold
Gold


Joined: 12 Mar 2016
Location: Northland
Status: Offline
Points: 570
I tend to rarely take snapper below 40cm. Average would be 55-65cm.

Been well over a year since ive killed a 20lber. Simply let them swim because usually 1. Too lazy to swim to the boat. 2. Means the days over as a lot of fish to consume for 2 people / only so much you can give away to the neighbours..

I also dont go out to get a feed. Goal is usually to try not have any gear break and or boat. Anything else is a bonus.

Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jun 2019 at 9:39pm
smudge View Drop Down
Moderator - Ninja
Moderator - Ninja
Avatar

Joined: 17 Jul 2002
Location: Te Toro
Status: Offline
Points: 22950
I'd say it's too big if you don't have a use for it. There are plenty of ways to prepare fish without frying them. I think big snapper are beautiful smoked.


Best gurnard fisherman in my street
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote ofthesea Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jun 2019 at 10:58pm
ofthesea View Drop Down
Silver
Silver


Joined: 12 Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Points: 267
Up to the individual, but after a few big catches I don't feel like it's any great achievement catching an extremely large snapper and for eating as fillets would rather have a mid-size fish
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Steps Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 9:19am
Steps View Drop Down
Titanium
Titanium


Joined: 14 Oct 2013
Location: Sth Auckland
Status: Offline
Points: 8143
Big snapper , as mentioned tend to be a little more tougher... but not because they are bigger.
Its like lambs fry, needs to be just cooked, and to cook a thick one all the way thru, the outside gets over cooked...and tough.
Thicker lambs fry, if split thru the center cooks far nicer , even and tender.
 Larger snaps also smoke better (well at cold to 45 deg.. dont know about hot smoke), being thicker like kings, KY etc.
They cut up better for stir frys , curries etc.

Back to original post thu

We all catch snapper. So at what point ( or length) does it become to big to keep?
I don't keep anything under 35, and have caught a few of a decent size of around 55 cm.but always hear the term "pannie"
.
Subject time of yr/ hard fishing days
Start of the day.. objective is a feed.. anything over about 32 goes in the bin.. till a min feed for each family is caught.
Once that is sorted, pretty well choice of each crew from there.
 Once a good feed, bit to family , neighbours covered.. switch to big hooks.. 9 or 10/0, big baits till the bite dies away. Catch and release.
 In deep water, play the fish a bit more and bring up slower
It is very surprising just how small a snapper will get on a 10/0.
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote MightyBoosh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 10:02am
MightyBoosh View Drop Down
Platinum
Platinum
Avatar

Joined: 08 Jan 2016
Location: Northland
Status: Offline
Points: 1774
I changed my fishing style over the last year because I was catching too many big snapper. I try not to take more than I need, so if I caught a 15lb plus snapper within the first hour of fishing, that was pretty much my day over. A lot of preparation and cleanup for an hour's fishing! More than enough "meat" for my family. Plus there are the reasons outlined above for not taking big fish. Having said that, no point in releasing dead fish. Unless a fish is hooked in the mouth in shallow water, I would seriously consider keeping it. I fillet big snapper in the usual way, then cut the fillet in to "fish bites" across the grain which are just the right thickness for frying. No complaints.


World's most boring jetski "pilot".
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote REIVER Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 10:54am
REIVER View Drop Down
Gold
Gold
Avatar

Joined: 05 Jun 2010
Location: Rotorua
Status: Offline
Points: 861
The texture does change in the bigger ones, but they are still delicious. 'Pannie' is relative to the size of the pan you  use! As Smudge said, fried is only one way to eat fish. Smoked snapper is amazing. Good recipe here for the really big ones. 

Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Downtown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 8:39pm
Downtown View Drop Down
Platinum
Platinum


Joined: 19 Jan 2011
Location: TGA
Status: Offline
Points: 1990
Always an individuals choice. I tend to think alot of big fish get returned to just die either through poor handling or not taking coming up from depths well. One of the last fishing news mags had an article and had some figures from some studies which weren't great for bringing fish out of deeper water. Also think matt Watson is responsible for alot the knobs all over Facebook making breeder comments as he's always forced it down everyone's throats to release even at depths that don't have a decent chance of survival.
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote JustAnotherSpearo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 9:08pm
JustAnotherSpearo View Drop Down
Gold
Gold


Joined: 12 Mar 2016
Location: Northland
Status: Offline
Points: 570
Fair call Downtown
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 9:35pm
The Tamure Kid View Drop Down
Platinum
Platinum


Joined: 25 Aug 2015
Location: Auckland
Status: Offline
Points: 2433
Originally posted by Downtown Downtown wrote:

Also think matt Watson is responsible for alot the knobs all over Facebook making breeder comments as he's always forced it down everyone's throats to release even at depths that don't have a decent chance of survival.

I recall his episode using a venting tool to pop the swim bladder, and I've read question marks over that method of trying to save embolised fish. I understand that the crushing effects of the bends aren't that easily recovered from.
Mark Kitteridge is always making that point to people on the Ocean Angler Facebook page - that fish taken out of 50m should be kept.

It's also always been in the back of my mind whether elderly fish are actually effective breeders - or younger fish are better. Hence my comment earlier in the thread about the detrimental effect of taking 7 younger breeders out of the ecosystem versus one elderly one.

anyone seen any solid research on that?
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Muppet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 9:36pm
Muppet View Drop Down
Titanium
Titanium
Avatar

Joined: 26 May 2004
Location: North Shore
Status: Offline
Points: 14334
This old chestnut, do what you will you know the limits. 
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote cirrus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 9:58pm
cirrus View Drop Down
Titanium
Titanium


Joined: 07 May 2011
Status: Offline
Points: 8374
If you want to keep a big fish keep it. If you want to release it and its in good health release it. My wife managed a big fish last year .Open sand about 10-15 meters. Was gut hooked on a huge bait but  not bleeding. Tried to release three times but it just would not swim away
The fight in current had worn it out.
Kept it. Was one of the sweetest ,most tender fish you could wish for. 
Was only 72 cm to tail fork but in condition like you rarely see. So fat & deep across the shoulders.Would have gone 16-17 lb.
Do fish taken from deep water survive when released. I have had some snapper from 15 meter with the gut bulging out the mouth. Others from same depth look o.k
Re big fish been best breeders. Bigger the fish the bigger the roe.
Couple of years back there was a big snapper in new world. It went 24lb. It did not sell as a whole fish as hoped. So they filleted it.
They showed me the roe. Massive. Just didnt know roe got that big.
Shame that fish was lost to the fishery
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote smudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 10:07pm
smudge View Drop Down
Moderator - Ninja
Moderator - Ninja
Avatar

Joined: 17 Jul 2002
Location: Te Toro
Status: Offline
Points: 22950
I don't understand the big fish genetics thing. All fish with big fish genes were little for most of their lives. They still had the same genes. Correct me if that statement is wrong. 

If that is true then a lot of fish on their way to the top should have been released? Surely that statement is true too. Also it must be true thatonly fish with big fish genetics get to be big fish. 

Ohhh hang on a minute, is their any science that says there is a 46cm snapper that is 80 years old? 

We only know what we know. 


Best gurnard fisherman in my street
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Horse1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jun 2019 at 10:20pm
Horse1 View Drop Down
Bronze
Bronze
Avatar

Joined: 30 Dec 2011
Location: The Tron
Status: Offline
Points: 11
I have the belief that good spawning is about more than the size of the fish and the size of the roe. Climatic conditions play a far bigger role than fish size from what I've been led to believe. Every legal fish on our boat is taken and we will pull stumps when we have enough for a good feed. I hate the thought i could be releasing a heap of fish that won't make it, that's just a waste.
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Garry 23041 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Jun 2019 at 6:52am
Garry 23041 View Drop Down
Platinum
Platinum


Joined: 19 May 2007
Location: Mangonui
Status: Online
Points: 1982
I put big fish back in part so someone else might get to catch it and have that buzz.
Particularly with kingfish these days getting smaller on average where I fish.
I think small snaps are finer flesh, nicer eating and to divert slightly we think fish from cleaner water taste better.
My wife and I agree fish from up north on the coast (north cape, reinga etc) taste better than bay fish.
Anyone else think/notice that?
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote waynorth Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jun 2019 at 10:06am
waynorth View Drop Down
Platinum
Platinum
Avatar

Joined: 06 Mar 2005
Location: Kerikeri
Status: Offline
Points: 1100
They often get a bit chewy over 7kg or so - fine for smoking or curries but maybe not so good for fish & chips.

Could be an age issue rather than size - the ranges in this chart surprised me. A 12 year old fish might be 90cm or might be undersized.


treat fish like fish
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote cirrus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jun 2019 at 11:30am
cirrus View Drop Down
Titanium
Titanium


Joined: 07 May 2011
Status: Offline
Points: 8374
Interesting. What was the source of chart. Probably accurate.
Did a bit looking to see what i could find.

Found that a 4 year old fish is 30cm. But another source says a 4 year old is 25cm. Neither report stated what fishery these figures came from. So growth could vary dependent on the fishery zone.
Another pdf from nz govt stated the oldest recorded snapper was 65 years old,measured 67cm ,recorded from sn7 in 2000.

Also statedthat from 1994 class in hauraki gulf, surveyed in 2009 @ 16years ,size varied from 28cm to 58cm. Big variation for same year class.
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Grunta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jun 2019 at 11:59am
Grunta View Drop Down
Admin
Admin
Avatar

Joined: 17 Jul 2002
Location: Paradise
Status: Offline
Points: 8544
Do what's right for all parties (ie: the angler and the fish) at the time. To me, that means if a snapper has been bought up from >20m and/or is blown, it's prognosis is probably not that great, and you should probably keep it.  That scenario gets worse the deeper you're fishing too.

Having said that however, it's all over if it's been spiked and in the bin.

As someone has already pointed out, the bigger snapper smoke up really well and if you cut the fillets up across the grain into appropriate-sized slices, are just fine to cook.

Again it comes down to doing what you believe is right at the time in my view. If you've caught enough for a decent feed and don't need it then why kill it?  If you're killing a trophy fish just for bragging rights then there are better ways these days and the number of clubs and contests that are moving to measure based contests and enabling the anglers to either keep or release the fish is growing. 

On the subject of genes, and breeding ability I think it's pretty well documented that large snapper produce more eggs than small snapper. Any gene pool carries a range of genetic material and some individuals will grow to be considerably larger than others and at any specific age, there will be a normal distribution of size - weights and lengths. So the argument about letting the big healthy specimens go from a genetic perspective is simply that they carry those strong healthy genes for biggie-size.

Here's a piece that ran in NZ Fishing News in March 2018 ago on genetics that goes into much more detail - I know the author well and she's a keen angler herself...



If you’re not already a member of the 20lb snapper club, your time might be running out thanks to human-induced evolution, suggests genetics student Anna Blair…

According to Darwin’s theory of evolution, the most successful organisms will survive to thrive and pass their genes on to the next generation. While environmental factors are normally the major determinant of reproductive success, when we interfere with natural selection, the gene pool is altered, a process termed Human Induced Evolution. 

Selective agents
We tend to act as selective agents when fishing because there is a natural tendency to think that ‘bigger is better’ and to place a high value on ‘PB’s’ for different species. Large trophy fish often end up on the scales – most fishing contests bear witness to that observation. 

Removing a disproportionate number of fish with certain genes from a population means those genes are not passed on in the same proportion to future generations and the percentage of those fish in the total population will decline. 

Size-selective harvesting or killing of larger fish means a shift to greater proportions of smaller fish in the population. These smaller sized fish pass on their genes, so the average size in the population is shifted towards the smaller end of the scale.

Fisheries-induced evolution has been happening for decades and it happens much faster than natural evolution. Archaeological evidence confirms that the average size of snapper was once much larger than it is today. The age, size and weight of snapper at maturity has declined over time with the most likely causes an increase in fishing pressure and advances in technology.

Shrinking populations
Fisheries-induced evolution poses a threat to the future state of fisheries, affecting yields, stock stability and recovery potential of populations. Size-selective harvesting may cause fish populations to reach maturity at a younger age and smaller size, at which the individuals have lower productivity. 

Large female fish produce more eggs and larger males produce more sperm, so the number of offspring per head of population tends to be larger than with populations containing smaller sized fish. Larger males also tend to be preferred by females and have more reproductive success than smaller male fish. 

Genetic diversity is critical for the health and success of a population because it is the raw material for evolution. Genetic traits are naturally selected for or against based on fluctuations in environmental conditions. A reduction in genetic diversity results in decreased ability of individuals to adapt to changing conditions: fewer individuals will survive in the event of environmental change and population size decreases. The fish that do survive to produce offspring pass on similar genes, contributing to greater genetic uniformity. 

The cycle repeats, making it more difficult for a species to return to the productivity and diversity it once enjoyed. 

Not only does fisheries-induced evolution have a negative effect on the fish populations themselves, but it also has social and economic implications, such as decreased commercial fishing potential and a reduction in the contribution of recreational fishing to New Zealand’s economy.   

Norway’s cod
An example of fisheries-induced evolution has been exhibited in the case of the Norwegian cod stock. Large fish are prized in Norway and fetch higher prices at fish markets. The cod stock has undergone multiple declines since the first quota was introduced in 1978, and since 1930 the average size and age of sexual maturity in cod has decreased significantly. 

Doctoral research fellow Anne Maria Eikeset of the Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis published findings that suggested evolutionary change, as a result of the boom in the commercial fishing industry, is the culprit. As large fish go for the highest price, their genes for large size, increased reproductive success and later sexual maturity have continuously been removed from the population. 

The fact that changes are being made at the genetic level means fishing, both recreationally and commercially, is affecting species more than we have been aware of. While some populations may be able to recover in terms of biomass, it is unclear whether reversals in terms of genetic diversity are possible. 

Research models produced by various groups indicate that several years of evolutionary recovery will be required to restore populations to their highly productive and diverse states for each subsequent year of exploitation at its current rate. This ‘Darwinian debt’ will need to be repaid by future generations that are already suffering from other effects of environmental neglect. 

Fish for the future
So, what can we do about it? Fortunately, there are a few ways we can aid the recovery of our great New Zealand fish populations and reduce the amount of genetic diversity lost through fishing. We already have a size limit on the lower end of the scale, so maybe an upper size limit could be introduced during breeding seasons to allow big fish to reproduce and pass on their genes. 

Releasing large fish will also be important and fortunately a change of attitude around killing the big ones is starting to filter through to most anglers. 

Competitions should focus on sustainability rather than kill and weigh. Again, there’s a real shift to using measurement as the criteria for angling achievement and recognition. Today’s technology makes it easy to photograph a fish on a measure and have that recognised, but also allows big fish to be released to breed another day. 

The DB Export NZ Fishing Competition is a good example of the use of technology to empower anglers to make their own decisions on what’s best for the fishery and sustainability.

We have an opportunity to make a positive change for future generations – letting some of those big catches go is worthwhile for the benefit of the future keen anglers of New Zealand. 

So, when you tick off that bucket-list goal of a 20lb snapper or a 30kg kingfish, if it’s in good condition, maybe it can go back to keep those large-growth genes in the pool!

Anna Blair is studying genetics at Otago University.

References
https://www.forskningsradet.no/en/Newsarticle/Humaninduced+fish+evolution/1235738803339
http://www.annualreviews.org/doi/10.1146/annurev-ecolsys-112414-054339
Back to Top
Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote cirrus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jun 2019 at 12:41pm
cirrus View Drop Down
Titanium
Titanium


Joined: 07 May 2011
Status: Offline
Points: 8374
A well researched and very accurate article . 
Back to Top
Page  12>
Forum Jump
Forum Permissions View Drop Down


This page was generated in 0.135 seconds.