Jimmy Lirot is an avid catfish angler and record keeper. He keeps track of things like water temps, barometric pressure, water clarity, and time and date of catches. He uses the data to help him catch more catfish.
Personally, Lirot does not keep catfish anymore. He reports that most of the reservoirs and waters in his area are way over-fished as everybody seems to keep everything they catch. He believes that only the smaller ones should be kept for the table by anyone.
“It is really a conservation thing,” states Lirot. “It is better for the population if only the eaters are kept and the bigger ones returned so they can grow. And with the bigger ones, I do what I can to relieve their stress before release. I want to give them a better opportunity to survive.”
“Fish that are in the livewell need special attention,” advised Lirot. “When tournament fishing, for example, I change the water often. I also keep the recirculating pumps working. Those efforts are aimed at keeping plenty of oxygen in the water. The idea is to have the fish come out of the livewell in better shape than when they went in.”