The red snapper above has it's stomach protruding from it's mouth and the body is bloated. Be very careful not to pierce the stomach when using any return device.
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Fishermen often catch fish that are too small, out of season, not editable or they just do not want to keep. When these fish are reeled up from deep water, the changes in pressures cause the internal organs and swim bladder to expand, a condition known as fish barotrauma. If released, this condition prevents the fish from returning to its habitat causing the fish to die. This elongated barbless upside down hook, physically takes the fish back to the bottom, naturally recompressing the trapped air relieving the barotrauma effect, oxygenating the fish on the way down and releasing it unharmed. The device uses a weight to descend the fish and a retrieval line to bring it back to the surface. This device is simple with no moving parts or triggers and is capable of returning multiple fish at the same time.
Patent No. 9,241,479
Parts of the Fish Saver Device.
Before you can use the Fish Saver, you must first attach a retrieval line to
Ring 1 on the bend by the Point as shown to the left. Something like parachute cord works well and doesn't tangle as bad. At least a 100' for water up to 300' deep or if you fish deeper then having an extra 100' of retrieval line would be great. You can use a hand line spool to hold your retrieval line or flake it into a bucket. We know several deep water fishermen that attach the Fish Saver to a spare rod. IMPORTANT TIP: If your using a retrieval line be sure to tie off the loose end to a cleat or at least the bucket handle. If you happen to be in deeper water it will save you from a loss of the device.
The weight clip is a most handy item. It enables you to detach and store the weight out of the way until you need it. We suggest you attach it to at least a 4 lb weight. Typically we use a 6-8 lb deep drop weight as it goes down quick, comes up quick, and stores handily in an unused rod holder on the boat. Down-rigger weight work very well also. Occasionally we catch bigger fish that need more weight but that's not so often. What a Problem to have, the weight always attaches to Ring 2 and is the first thing to hit the water.
When a fish is caught that needs to be returned, insert the sharp Point up through the skin under the fish's jaw and out its mouth, being careful not to puncture the stomach if it is protruding. At this point you can use the Fish Saver to hold the fish while removing the hook and avoiding contact with the fish. I personally find that a lip gaff works extremely well for holding the fish to insert the Fish Saver Point. Holding the fish off the deck helps to keep the fish's protective coating unharmed.
Holding the weight and the Fish Saver with the fish deep in the hook bend, near Ring 1, drop everything overboard, weight first. Allow the retrieval line to spool out until the desired depth is reached, 75’ – 100’ is usually sufficient. At this point, stop the retrieval line, the fish will slide off and the Fish Saver device can be reeled back up, ready for the next fish that needs to be saved.
Fish on, preparing for the toss, make sure yo have control of the retrieval line.
Make sure fish goes in head first behind the rig.
The Fish Saver is made of stainless steel and only requires rinsing in fresh water. If the Point be-comes dull, it can be sharpened with a file or stone.
KEEP AWAY FROM CHILDREN!!!!!! The Point on the Fish Saver is very sharp! Use caution when handling. Treat the devise as you would a fillet knife or gaff. Keep the Point covered when not in use.
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