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Old 10-03-2001, 12:19 PM   #1
Saukie
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Default How do you "Bleed" a fish?

I have to ask...as I am not clear to how one bleeds a fish...and why do you need to bleed it???...Ok I am dumb....

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Old 10-03-2001, 12:25 PM   #2
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

The number one reason to bleed a fish (as far as I know) is to get the blood out of the eggs, and I think in general it helps keep the meat a bit better. How do you bleed a fish. As soon as it is landed, just befor you are going to put it in the fish box, cut the gills. Depends on where you are, sometimes it is a good time to tie the fish off the boat and let it bleed in the water. Anyway this will help keep the eggs as bright as possible for curing later.
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Old 10-03-2001, 12:26 PM   #3
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

Saukie, I bleed mine by cutting the gills.Do this imediately ater landing your fish, this way the heart is till beating to pump the blood out. You can bonk them or not, I usually do and then cut them and they bleed just fine. This helps with the quality of the meat, no blood means better filets or steaks.If you watch someone filet fish that havent been bled you will notice a lot of blood this is dificult to get out of the meat and also will sour faster. Also the one most important reasons is it helps to get the blood out of the eggs [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]. I bleed every fish I catch no mater the species.

[ 10-03-2001: Message edited by: firedog ]
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Old 10-03-2001, 12:30 PM   #4
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

Very carefully. The heart is located in the triangle of meat at the bottom of the fish between the gill covers. I stab a knife into the center of this area parallel to the fishes body. Push the blade in an inch or two and forward towards the nose. This cuts the major blood vessels serving the heart and the fish bleeds out quickly. Also bonk em a couple of times first or your aim might suffer as it flops around.

On big Halibut cut through the point that joins the gills to the heart area. I also usually cut 1/2 way through the tail on a flattie. Sturgeon can be bled like a Halibut but dont cut the tail. For sturgeon it is also useful to put them in the water on a short line. The water helps them bleed out more completely. They can actually seal off the most severe cut so get the other side after a few minutes to finish the job.

Bleeding is a most essential step in caring for fish you plan to eat. This is because the blood spoils quickly and can ruin your tasty fish. Once dead, a fish should be kept cold and not left to soak in water. Salmon should be field dressed as soon as possible to prevent 'belly burn'. Remove all bloody parts and ice down. This includes Gills and the clot along the backbone.

[ 10-03-2001: Message edited by: Pilar ]
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Old 10-03-2001, 01:16 PM   #5
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

Pilar, I've gone into the heart before to bleed the fish. It works very well as long as you cut the artery rather than puncture the heart. If you cut the heart, it stops pumping. Also, if you bonk em on the head, doesn't the heart stop too?

I always be sure to cut both gill rakers to be sure the fish dies of blood loss and not heart or brain damage. I toss em in the box and let em flop and bleed. They don't make noise for long.

I've noticed when bleeding salmon, if you cut just one gill, the eggs on that side are clean of blood, but the other side still holds blood in the vein.

I've also seen people hang salmon streamside and cut the tail to bleed them. I've had a hard time finding that vein and messed up a few good tail sections looking for it.
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Old 10-03-2001, 01:38 PM   #6
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

RIGHT OR WRONG, ANY ATTEMPT TO REMOVE AS MUCH BLOOD AS POSSIBLE IS A BENEFIT IN MANY WAYS AS STATED ABOVE. I’D LIKE TO MENTION ONE THING AS FAR AS TYING YOUR CATCH OFF ON THE SIDE OF YOUR BOAT AND LET HIM BLEED OUT AS YOU COUNTING TO FISH. I TRY NOT TO LEAVE THE FISH ALONG THE BOAT FOR MORE THAN 10 OR 15 MINS. IF YOUR IN HIGH TRAFFIC AREA SUCH AS THE WIND RIVER OR DRANO THERE’S A LOT OF TWO STROKES PUMPING OUT A LOT OF UNBURNED FUEL WHICH FLOATS RIGHT WHERE YOUR CATCH IS DRAGGING WITCH OF COARSE HAS ITS MOUTH OPEN DRINKING THAT RAW FUEL AND OIL. “JUST A THOUGHT”
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Old 10-03-2001, 01:43 PM   #7
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

I do it a little differently but its easy. Instead of cutting the gills, cut just behind the gills and parallel to the gills. Usually a 3 inch incision with a fillet knife works great. This severs the major veins leading to the gills.

Usually after the blow to the head, the heart is still beating a little and if it is, the heart will pump them dry in no time.

[ 10-03-2001: Message edited by: finclipped ]
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Old 10-03-2001, 01:50 PM   #8
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

Take a fish you just whacked. Now clean it. Set aside the heart and keep your eye on it. It will beat sporadically for a couple hours, even after being removed from the fish. [img]images/icons/shocked.gif[/img]
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Old 10-03-2001, 02:06 PM   #9
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

oooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwweeeeeeeoooooooo!

Sounds like Halloween!
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Old 10-03-2001, 02:09 PM   #10
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

I bleed my fish. It helps with better eggs and a better quality meat [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

[ 10-03-2001: Message edited by: FISHRUS ]
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Old 10-03-2001, 02:50 PM   #11
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

The heart will pump regularly for a couple of minutes after a bonk. But you don't want to wait too long. I bonk, then cut a gill arch or two on each side and then put the fish either head first or up stream and let it bleed out. It only takes a few minutes and gets nearly all blood out of the eggs and meat. The artery on the tail is what we used to bleed our fish at the hatchery. It works well too, but you don't cut any meat when cutting the arches.
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Old 10-03-2001, 03:08 PM   #12
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

I bleed every fish I keep. Salmon, tuna, and halibut, I cut through the gills and out the bottom of the gill arch. Rockfish and lingcod, I cut as many of the gillrakers as I can, usually with a pair of clippers.

If I can, I will keep the fish in water while it bleeds out, either in a bucket or a water filled fish box. This keeps the blood from clotting. Then put your fish on ice.

Proper handling makes all the difference in the world, in terms of presentation, flavor, and how long the fish will stay fresh.
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Old 10-03-2001, 03:50 PM   #13
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

I like to poke them in the wrist just above or forward of the tail. You need a good, stiff bladed knife and poke straight in through the spine. Then hang your fish either from an oarlock or handy tree limb. Does a great job of bleeding them out. If I'm in the sled out in open water I'll cut the gills but if I have my choice I prefer the tail.
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Old 10-03-2001, 09:42 PM   #14
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

As a side note, in AK after a butt was headed we would sometimes,dark side up stick a screwdriver in the "mouth" side of the skinny area just above the tail. We would then shove and hold a hose down it's gut cavity and turn the water on. It would get any blood left in the fish out and it was kinda cool. Course we had to look and smell alot of fish. Only did it to the 150+ pounders.
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Old 10-03-2001, 10:18 PM   #15
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

I bleed my Salmon/Steelhead by cutting just in front of the tail from the bottom up untill you hit the backbone and the artery there. You will know when you hit it beacause the blood just pours out. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 10-04-2001, 12:24 PM   #16
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

Most of you have been talking about bleeding salmon/steelhead. It is problably more important to bleed sturgeon as soon as possible. Watch a cleaning station during sturgeon time at the coast. The people who bleed their sturgeon have very nice looking white meat. The people who don't bleed them have ugly red meat which is full of blood. You can wash the meat as much as you want and most of will not come out. I'm sure these are the people who take it home cook it and then say yuck sturgeon sucks. I wonder why? [img]images/icons/rolleyes.gif[/img]
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Old 10-04-2001, 04:39 PM   #17
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Default Re: How do you "Bleed" a fish?

i stick the knife thru the top of the gills with the blade pointed towards the back bone and cut the main blood supply below it`s backbone, blood comes pourin out, have been doin it this way for years.
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