Clean your fish at home-or do it on the bank?

I always clean my fish at home or camp. I keep them in the water when bank fishing, keep a big cooler in the truck with a bucket of frozen water to keep them cool on the way home. If I'm fishing from a boat for kokanee I just throw them in a cooler with an inch or 2 of ice. Should I maybe gut them on the bank or boat shortly after catching them? My fish always taste great, but hey-could they taste better if I did it differently? I'm wondering what you all do...Thanks, SpecialEd
Left Bank
I always bleed em at the lake/river then gut em when I get home. But keeping them cool like you mentioned is the key.
x2 and save the remaines for crab bait.
It is illegal in Oregon to do it on the bank.
Kodiak said:
Some rules need to be broken...Repeatedly:;): Clean them on the bank, make sure you through everything you arent going to take home in the river(except your garbage). The intestines and carcasses provide critical nutrients back to the river for smolt and fry. Always clean them in the river.

You would think as a moderator you would set a LEGAL example. Sure it makes sense to toss them back...but bottom line it's not legal in Oregon.

As for staying on topic.. I bleed my fish and ice them. I clean them as soon as I get home or back to camp. I've had no issues with meat quality doing it this way.
Kodiak said:
Clean them on the bank
If you think that the rule is "wrong" and can prove it - contact ODFW. They are not idiots the are highly educated professionals. If what you are saying makes sense they would change the rule. But I doubt they made this rule because they didn't know how it's good for rivers if we gut fish on the bank. Any way, if this rule good or bad, it's a rule. Think twice before you brake it. Think more before you advise others to do it. Especially, as Jeanna noticed, when you have a "Moderator" badge on your chest. ;)
I think they have the rule so an osp officer can tell wether or not the fish was native......
ya, y is it that they have that with kodiak on this one, i think that as long as its in the water and giving other fish extra nutrients, it should be ok......i would never leave guts on the ground or on the river does anyone know y they have this rule....i know its not to tell if its a native or not, because gutting a fish does not effect the adipose-fin....i could see not being able to fillet it up or whatever but....... and also is it just oregon that is this way, or maybe other states??
As far as I know not all states have such a rule. Regarding "I'm with Kodiak on this one"... Don't get me wrong, I'd rather fillet fish on a bank instead of creating a bloody mess in my kitchen. :lol: And then the carcass stinks in a garbage can for days... But as long as there is such a rule in Oregon, I'll keep doing it how the rule says, and will suggest others, too. ;)
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ageed, antoliy
rippin fish lips
agreed, antoliy. i can see how it wouldnt affect the water systems because the guts and remains will get eatin up by crawdads and other fish. BUT odfw knows what they are doing and its for a good reason. thats why they make these rules. But like thuggin has said, gut the fish at home and freeze the remains, let em add up until u can make a crabbing trip, it's good crab bait!!! you can even let it rawt out a little then use it for crab bait and it's way effective too.
rippin fish lips
It wont let me edit my post, so sorry for the double post guys! but this is a long story short one day last summer....

I was floating the mac one day last summer from the hatchery side below the damn to greenwood , hooked a nice white/chrome steely, was so beautiful, faught it for about 6 minutes, then at the end it made one last run away fromt he net, jumped and snapped my 8lb test, and got my lucky thomas lure! after that we floated down and posted up at the next hole, only to see a guy have about 4-7 salmon on a stringer...not lying...i was watchign him clean them and pick everyone up, he was gutting them and skinning the back off the fish, most of them were probably NATIVE!!! I HAVE NEVER FELT SO DISCUSTED OVER A FISHERMEN before. and im 100% POSITIVE there was 4-7 on his stringer, and only 1 of him.
Swamp Puppy
rippin fish lips said:
odfw knows what they are doing

you owe me a new keyboard...because as i read this i spit coke all over mine from laughing so hard.

at any rate.. i don't clean my fish on the bank. i fish from a boat! ;)

seriously though. never realized you couldn't gut a fish and toss the remains as long as you didn't completely clean it or render it impossible for someone to ID the fish as a legal one. Been gutting mine and sending the remains down to the scavengers all along. never had anyone say a thing about it to me including the ODFW folks that checked me at the ramp.

not arguing..i am sure it is a law. just never had anyone mess with me about it.
I think in washington they want you to sclean them in the river and leave the nutrients behind to promote good stream/river health. in oregon they want to promote a good apperance at the ramp and fish parts in the water dont help make this point so they make it illegal which stops complaining people from complaining and at the same time generates income from those not following the law. A very stupid law. we should start a petition.
I was fishing with a guy who works for hatchery, and was quite surprised when in the end of our fishing trip he fillet a steelhead and tossed the carcass in a river. "Isn't it illegal?" asked I. "Well, technically, yes" he answered, "but a carcass in a river is good for a river". So my question is if it's really a "stupid" rule, how come the anglers of Oregon didn't make ODFW change it to a "smart" one yet?
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i would sign that petition
rippin fish lips
Ok, so they dont want us to throw remains in the rivers, but if u think about it, all the salmon that dont get caught and die off are on the river anyways.
I usually gut and clean at home and end up smelling up the house. My wife can not stand fish so i would be better off cleaning them on the bank maybe...

As far as i know its illegal. Anyone know if the rule applies in bays, jettys, or ocean beaches.
yeah i think thuggin has a point....i bet swimmers have argued the most about the issue....."they dont like the way it looks in the river".....but gutting your fish on the bank nd leaving all the remains next to the water (not in the water) is down right bull sh**. that should be the illegal part!!!
the rule could be there because if every time some one caught one of those stocker trout they threw the carcass in the river you might have a problem especially in a slow moving lake

so i think it should be illegal for trout but salmon and steelhead makes sense to clean it in the river, because they would die there any way... and i was reading a sign at the clackamas fish hatchery and it say they take some of the extra nook they get each year and just dump em dead in the river for nutrients lol
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