Tiger Musky will hit just about anything....if you are going to hunt the tigers, below is a list of some basic equipment and releasing activities that will help in the survival rate of caught fish.
Basic EquipmentMuskie tackle often consists of a heavy-action casting rod and a bait-casting reel loaded with 50- to 80-pound test braided line. Always use a steel leader to prevent muskie from cutting the line with their razor-sharp teeth. A large pair of long-nose pliers and strong, sharp hook cutters will help unhook the muskie quickly. A LARGE landing net is important when landing muskie. Polarized sunglasses are recommended to improve your chances of spotting a following muskie.
Tips on Releasing muskie
- Only play the fish long enough to easily land. Playing a muskie to complete exhaustion can make it difficult to revive.
- Whenever possible, release the fish while it is still in the water. If you use a large landing net, once netted, leave the fish in the water while still in the net so it can continue to breath. Beware, the muskie's sharp teeth and it's powerful body can thrash without warning and cause damage to you or the fish. Use long pliers to remove the hooks, cutting the hooks which can not be removed easily. Barbless hooks make hook removal much easier.
- Do not keep the muskie out of the water for a lengthy picture-taking session. A ruler taped to the outside of the boat will allow for rapid measurement and release. Weights can be derived from length-weight charts. You can estimate the weight of your muskie using the following formula (length x girth x girth/800=estimated weight). Length and weight are measured in inches and girth is measured at the thickest part of the muskie.
- Never hold the fish by the eye sockets or gills.
- Hold the unhooked muskie horizontally while supporting the belly with one hand. This will prevent the muscles and vertebrae from being separated or broken.
- To release the fish, hold the muskie in the water horizontally. When the muskie is revived, it will swim out of your hands.
Moderation is overrated.