Whether fishing on your kayak or simply paddling through the water to grab a day’s catch, you should know how to use a fish stringer. Unfortunately, most professional anglers claim to know how to use a fish stringer but seldom can actually operate the simple device to its optimal benefit.
A fish stringer is mainly used to keep your catch fresh during your fishing session. If you misuse your stringer, the results will be quite the opposite, and you’ll end up with dead fish on your way home.
To avoid such a situation, read this guide for using a fishing stringer before heading out for your next fishing session.
What Is a Fish Stringer?
If you’re an aspiring angler looking to venture into the fishing world, you’ll need to know what a fish stringer is. Mainly, it is a small device from which you can hang your catch while continuing your fishing trip.
While the device lets you hold your fish using a low-capacity boat such as a kayak, it also helps you keep your fish alive and fresh. As a result, it is an excellent alternative to expensive coolers and cheap fish baskets usually made with lightweight and simple materials such as a rope and a hook.
Instead of removing your catch from the water and leaving it to die in a basket or freeze in a cooler, a stringer lets it float with you inside the water. This way, you can keep the fish fresh and alive for as long as you like and ensure a hearty feast back home.
While there are many types of fishing stringers, the device mainly includes a sting made of rope or a chain. Connected to the cord is a metal or plastic tip that helps pass the string into the fish’s mouth. Similarly, a hook or hoop on the other end secures the fish into the string until it is time for you to remove it.
How to Use a Fish Stringer on a Kayak
You’re barely 10 minutes into your fishing trip and have already nailed a massive catch for the day! That’s great, but how do you store the fish in your fish stringer to keep it fresh until you reach home?
Fasten Your Stringer
First of all, using your fish stringer begins before you set out into the water. You’ll have to attach the stringer to your boat if you are kayaking or canoeing. Usually, kayaks and canoes have hooks for stringers at the back so that the fish don’t get in the way if you’re paddling.
A pro tip, in this case, is to attach a colored float to your stringer. This way, the fish will get attracted to the float and remain closer to the surface, reducing the drag and helping you retain your fish quickly in case the stringer unfastens by itself.
Attach Your Catch Through the Stringer
When you have caught a fish, you’ll have to use the sharp needle on the stringer to pass the fish through the rope. Remember, where you pass your needle through is crucial. Unfortunately, most anglers make the mistake of passing the needle through the gills, restricting the fish from breathing.
This reduces the freshness of your catch if you’re out in the water for hours at a stretch. The best way is to pass the needle through its lower lip. This way, the fish remains alive and fresh until you return to the shore.
Once you pass the needle through the fish’s lower lip, make sure you pass the fish through the ring and into the rope and secure it tightly. Next, use the ring to sew the fish onto the stringer, so it attaches appropriately and keeps it from swimming off with the stringer itself.
Other Factors to Keep in Mind
Furthermore, you should keep various other facts in mind while using a fishing stringer. For example, avoid leaving the fish in the water for too long as they might attract sharks. In such situations, sharks might take off with your catch or try to attack you.
Similarly, choose the length of your stringer based on the amount of fish you intend to come back with. Remember not to overload your stringer, or else it will slow your boat down and risk getting untied from the boat.
Fish stringers are simple and easy-to-use devices that ensure your catch remains fresh throughout your fishing session until you reach the shore. It works in an accessible way by letting the fish stay where they belong until it is time for cleaning.
However, if you misuse the stringer, you might end up with dead and foul-smelling fish even after fastening them securely. Make sure to pass the needle through the fish’s lower lip to keep it alive and fresh.
Moreover, various types of fish stringers, such as rope and chain stringers, are available in the market. So, it is better to read the user manual for your particular device to achieve its optimal benefit.