Coastal Fishing Forums: AllCoast banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How are the fish processed on a long range trip. Do they fillet them on the boat, and you take fillets to the processor, or what? Are your fish frozen when you get them from the boat?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,822 Posts
There are processors waiting at the docks for the boats and you make a deal with one of them. I have one trip under my belt so every thing was a surprise to me. The deck hands will load the fish into carts and you and your fellow fishermen push the carts to the dock and all of you sort out the fish by tag number. Once you get your pile of fish, you get another cart and push it to the company of choice. I forget the pricing by pound. I don't remember it being too expensive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,157 Posts
If you're talking about your 6.5 day trip, they won't filet on board--Mexican law prohibits it. Most of the premier long range boats now offer a choice between freezing your catch or putting it into "RSW" (Refrigerated Salt Water--salt water freezes at a lower temperature than fresh water, this is so cold as to hold your fish just above where the meat will freeze--generally offered only during the last 5 days of a trip because its better to freeze the fish for longer periods).

If the boat offers RSW, I strongly suggest using it--properly done, the quality is much better than frozen.

In either case, when you reach the dock, your fish will be unloaded into carts--regular carts for frozen, slush filled bins for RSW. It is then pushed to the top of ramp. Frozen is laid out next to cones corresponding to the number each angler used on the trip, RSW goes directly to the processor--you have to choose a processor on board so that they know where to send your fish. You could also take your RSW and/or frozen fish home to process it yourself.

The two biggest processors are 5 Star and Mario, but there is at least one other. I use 5 Star, but Mario also has a very good reputation. If your fish is RSW, you can wait while they process it, if its frozen you must leave it so that it can defrost and be processed. If your fish is frozen, or you choose not to wait, you can either come back to pick up your fish later, or have them ship it to you (extra charge for shipping).

You can instruct the processors how you want it processed (skin on or off, bloodlines in or out, size of chunks). Price last year was $.75 per pound in the round.

I took my fish home from my first 5 day trip, and after that experience swore off it. When I got home, I had enough to do with cleaning myself, my gear, etc. Cutting my fish took time, then chunking it and most especially vacuum sealing and freezing it was a b!tch, and then I had deal with a hundred pounds of fish bones and guts. Unless I have a bad catching trip and not a lot of fish, I have sworn off home processing (some people still do it, but not me).

You can also trade your whole fish for canned. In that case, the fish has to be frozen. The trading ratio varies throughout the year and depends upon the species being traded, but generally expect 6-9# whole fish for a 6 oz can.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,134 Posts
Brad hit it right on target. Nothing more to add expect this. This is really important. Remember you are paying in the ROUND. If you have 500 lbs of fish thats 350 bucks for about 300 lbs or less back. So what I am trying to say is this, TAKE what you need an let the rest be released except for the galley. Its not uncommon to get off the boat with at least that much or more for that matter. The last trip I took I released probably 30/40 yt before I started keeping them. Matter of fact, I gave 4 full trays from 5 Star to the local fire depts because I had way too much.


Conserve for the future

Hollywood
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,962 Posts
If you have the option of having the fish frozen or RSW, I recommend picking a couple of nice fish you want to have processed for the RSW, and having the rest frozen. Give the RSW fish to the processor, and load the frozen fish in the back of the pickup, swing by the plant on the way home and give those bad boys away! You get to show off your fish, you?re a hero, and you get rid of the fish, and none of it goes to waste.

Cleaning them yourself is a pain, but it is cheap, and if you have a way to get rid of the carcasses it is not that bad. You can sawzall the sides off while they are still frozen, get rid of the carcass and trim and bag the sides over the next few days.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,964 Posts
Iron Thrower said:
Brad hit it right on target. Nothing more to add expect this. This is really important. Remember you are paying in the ROUND. If you have 500 lbs of fish thats 350 bucks for about 300 lbs or less back. So what I am trying to say is this, TAKE what you need an let the rest be released except for the galley. Its not uncommon to get off the boat with at least that much or more for that matter. The last trip I took I released probably 30/40 yt before I started keeping them. Matter of fact, I gave 4 full trays from 5 Star to the local fire depts because I had way too much.


Conserve for the future

Hollywood
Dang Ray...you are turning green....I'm proud of you....8)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,157 Posts
fishybuzz said:
Iron Thrower said:
Brad hit it right on target. Nothing more to add expect this. This is really important. Remember you are paying in the ROUND. If you have 500 lbs of fish thats 350 bucks for about 300 lbs or less back. So what I am trying to say is this, TAKE what you need an let the rest be released except for the galley. Its not uncommon to get off the boat with at least that much or more for that matter. The last trip I took I released probably 30/40 yt before I started keeping them. Matter of fact, I gave 4 full trays from 5 Star to the local fire depts because I had way too much.


Conserve for the future

Hollywood
Dang Ray...you are turning green....I'm proud of you....8)

Yep. There's roughly a 35-40% fillet yield (the larger the fish, the greater the yield ratio). So 300 lbs of fish would yield 120 lbs of fillets--even at half a pound per serving, that's 240 meals! And a lot of freezer space needed too. 300 pounds may sound like a lot to catch, but its just 10 fish of 30# each over 6.5 days--not hard at all to do on many longer trips.

Most of the long range boats in SD are advocating realesaing fish below a certain size, I think 24" for most pelagic species. The Shogun even gives out a small trophy on each trip for the angler who releases the most fish.

All of use should release what is not going to be eaten.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,134 Posts
walkerman said:
Does anyone know if the Big game 90 has RSW, of just freezer?

Check their web site. Fished on it once with Fishy,,,,,,,,,with that said, good luck.

Hell Fishy, we both have released more fish then we could ever eat on our last 10 day. Guess I am going "green". I respect the fish I catch now, love the fight, and just how many fish can a person or family eat after taking 6/7 trips a year anyway. I will no longer pay a buck a # an give 3/4 away. Like what Brad said, its real easy catching 300# of yellow, not counting 5/600# yft on a trip. I still have about 100# tuna an 30# of great grouper from our last Nov. trip. This trip this wknd, will probably just catch an release.

Ray
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,157 Posts
mcrae said:
Up to what length trip will they clean fish onboard? Does it vary from boat to boat. Thanks,McRae
They'll clean the fish on any trip that does not go into Mexico, as well as most trips up to overnight. I haven't heard of any major variation from boat to boat, but would expect the long range boats to adhere to the regulations more closely because they fish almost exclusively in Mexican waters and could really end up in trouble if they lose that right for violations...
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top