Fishin with the gators

jaywaptijaywapti Senior MemberPosts: 4,122 Senior Member
We went fishing this morning at a WMA on the St. Johns, caught 6 catfish all small but good eating size, the river was about 3' down and the gators were all over the place, it was a good morning.

JAY
THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
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Comments

  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 6,707 Senior Member
    That's a great time, for sure.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,878 Senior Member
    What flavor whisker fish do you catch down there Jay?
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 21,476 Senior Member
    Sounds like a fun trip and getting to see a lot of gators. And ANY time spent fishing is not wasted.

    Like Farmboy said, what kind of catfish you catch down there, channel, flathead, something else?????
    A double action revolver is a semiauto firearm. It fires once for every trigger pull.



  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 36,671 Senior Member
    Been on that river. To see the alligators. And there's a metric butt ton of them.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,122 Senior Member
    What flavor whisker fish do you catch down there Jay?

    Channel & white cats, brown & yellow bullheads, flatheads & blues are not native, I know they get them in North Fla. but i dont think they come this far south.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,878 Senior Member
    Do you eat bullhead? Around here they are considered a trash fish like carp or gar.

    To me a good eating size catfish is anything big enough to fillet up to about 10lbs.
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 36,671 Senior Member
    Do you eat bullhead? Around here they are considered a trash fish like carp or gar.

    To me a good eating size catfish is anything big enough to fillet up to about 10lbs.

    Best catfish I ever had, and likely the best freshwater fish I ever had, was from a 38-ish pound flathead. Of course my buddy who caught and cooked it said the key is the rule "if it ain't white, it ain't right." Meaning any and every bit of meat with any color gets fed to the chickens.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,878 Senior Member
    Very true there is probably some jackass up north who can make walleye taste bad. Food in general is at least 50% proper preparation.
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 36,671 Senior Member
    Very true there is probably some jackass up north who can make walleye taste bad. Food in general is at least 50% proper preparation.

    When he cooked it, I told him to not be offended if I didn't like it. He told me that I simply had never had it cooked properly. I told him that's what everyone says, and I still don't like catfish. I was wrong. His family hates that he "wastes" fish by tossing the non-white meat. He's offered to give it to them to cook...
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,878 Senior Member
    The fatty bits of catfish are barely fit for chicken food.
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 36,671 Senior Member
    The fatty bits of catfish are barely fit for chicken food.

    Damn. You're pretty sophisticated for an Okie.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,878 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Damn. You're pretty sophisticated for an Okie.

    You know it. Not everyone here is like your in-laws.
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,122 Senior Member
    Very true there is probably some jackass up north who can make walleye taste bad. Food in general is at least 50% proper preparation.

    I guess we all have different taste buds, having lived in Fla. for a large part of my life, raised on fresh caught salt water fish , i like fish that have a "strong" taste, i cant stand walleyes, there to bland, when we went fishing i would trade my walleyes for northern's, they taste better, as to bullheads, i love them, Jen smokes or grills them, If you have never eaten smoked carp you don't know how great they are.

    cpj Whats wrong with fresh tuna, salmon, mackerel, jacks, cobia, there all red or dark meat ??

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 36,671 Senior Member
    jaywapti wrote: »
    I guess we all have different taste buds, having lived in Fla. for a large part of my life, raised on fresh caught salt water fish , i like fish that have a "strong" taste, i cant stand walleyes, there to bland, when we went fishing i would trade my walleyes for northern's, they taste better, as to bullheads, i love them, Jen smokes or grills them, If you have never eaten smoked carp you don't know how great they are.

    cpj Whats wrong with fresh tuna, salmon, mackerel, jacks, cobia, there all red or dark meat ??

    JAY
    Nothing wrong with those. Why? Beats me. Maybe it's a saltwater thing. I LOVE grilled king mackerel. Yet it's considered from what I've heard from several people to be trash fish. No accounting for taste and all that.
    But dark meat in catfish is disgusting.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 7,316 Senior Member
    Sound like a great day fishing and eating fish.
    We need to wet a line together one of these days
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,122 Senior Member
    Diver43 wrote: »
    Sound like a great day fishing and eating fish.
    We need to wet a line together one of these days

    Come on up.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • Wambli SkaWambli Ska Moderator Posts: 25,045 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Nothing wrong with those. Why? Beats me. Maybe it's a saltwater thing. I LOVE grilled king mackerel. Yet it's considered from what I've heard from several people to be trash fish. No accounting for taste and all that.
    But dark meat in catfish is disgusting.
    Just like game meat, when I meet someone that tells me they don't like X fish I just assume someone gave them a refrozen piece of it caught a year ago when they cleaned out the freezer. Fresh Kingfish seasoned with salt, a touch of garlic and pepper, cut into thick steaks (not filleted) either grilled or pan fried in olive oil will make your eyes roll into the back of your head. It also makes a great smoked fish and it is GREAT cold next day!!!!!
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton
  • roadkingroadking Senior Member Posts: 3,049 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Nothing wrong with those. Why? Beats me. Maybe it's a saltwater thing. I LOVE grilled king mackerel. Yet it's considered from what I've heard from several people to be trash fish. No accounting for taste and all that.
    But dark meat in catfish is disgusting.

    King mackerel an barracuda are nothing but bait. Just sayin'. Out at "Hole in the wall" we used to catch 6'+ cudas prior to tournaments...the folks on the island wanted them for eating...we traded for Wahoo salad...we got the better deal.
    Support your local Scouts!
  • Wambli SkaWambli Ska Moderator Posts: 25,045 Senior Member
    roadking wrote: »
    King mackerel an barracuda are nothing but bait. Just sayin'. Out at "Hole in the wall" we used to catch 6'+ cudas prior to tournaments...the folks on the island wanted them for eating...we traded for Wahoo salad...we got the better deal.
    Big barracudas are not the best but young ones are GOOD eats :cool2:
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,122 Senior Member
    roadking wrote: »
    King mackerel an barracuda are nothing but bait. Just sayin'. Out at "Hole in the wall" we used to catch 6'+ cudas prior to tournaments...the folks on the island wanted them for eating...we traded for Wahoo salad...we got the better deal.

    The only fish that eats better than Cuda is hogfish.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    JAY, it's just on the very edge of the gator breeding season....any day now and it'll kick off. Gators will be more active day and night, and here where I am, 142 feet from a 6 thousand acre lake with the 2nd highest gator population in the state, when gators start roaring it's like being in a prehistoric wilderness! Damn things will come into the yard, too, and I have 2 pre-teen grandkids that live next to us and play in the yard. Guess what happens around my place this time of year :guns:
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 5,878 Senior Member
    JAY, it's just on the very edge of the gator breeding season....any day now and it'll kick off. Gators will be more active day and night, and here where I am, 142 feet from a 6 thousand acre lake with the 2nd highest gator population in the state, when gators start roaring it's like being in a prehistoric wilderness! Damn things will come into the yard, too, and I have 2 pre-teen grandkids that live next to us and play in the yard. Guess what happens around my place this time of year :guns:

    Absolutely nothing that doesn't happen in nature. Just less fuss.
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,122 Senior Member
    JAY, it's just on the very edge of the gator breeding season....any day now and it'll kick off. Gators will be more active day and night, and here where I am, 142 feet from a 6 thousand acre lake with the 2nd highest gator population in the state, when gators start roaring it's like being in a prehistoric wilderness! Damn things will come into the yard, too, and I have 2 pre-teen grandkids that live next to us and play in the yard. Guess what happens around my place this time of year :guns:

    We saw at least 50 gators, most were small, last years crop, they were back in the sloughs, the big ones were on the river bank getting a sun tan, most were 8' - 10' . They should start crocking any time, were going out there in the morning, not fishing ,just running the dogs.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 21,476 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Nothing wrong with those. Why? Beats me. Maybe it's a saltwater thing. I LOVE grilled king mackerel. Yet it's considered from what I've heard from several people to be trash fish. No accounting for taste and all that.
    But dark meat in catfish is disgusting.

    King and Spanish mackerel, Ling Cod, and a LOT of other saltwater fish meat is extremely oily. Those fish taste like excrement when fried in traditional Southern methods. They taste WAY better when grilled, or baked in the oven in on a raised screen to let the oil drip out, and are primo eats when smoked. The excess oil in the fish drips out and doesn't make them a soggy mess like frying.
    A double action revolver is a semiauto firearm. It fires once for every trigger pull.



  • cpjcpj Senior Member Posts: 36,671 Senior Member
    tennmike wrote: »
    King and Spanish mackerel, Ling Cod, and a LOT of other saltwater fish meat is extremely oily. Those fish taste like excrement when fried in traditional Southern methods. They taste WAY better when grilled, or baked in the oven in on a raised screen to let the oil drip out, and are primo eats when smoked. The excess oil in the fish drips out and doesn't make them a soggy mess like frying.
    I've only had it grilled. Which explains why it was tasty.
    "I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men."
    Zee
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 6,707 Senior Member
    tennmike wrote: »
    King and Spanish mackerel, Ling Cod, and a LOT of other saltwater fish meat is extremely oily. Those fish taste like excrement when fried in traditional Southern methods. They taste WAY better when grilled, or baked in the oven in on a raised screen to let the oil drip out, and are primo eats when smoked. The excess oil in the fish drips out and doesn't make them a soggy mess like frying.

    The raised screen/oven method is how we did bluefish when I was growing up, which is another oily disaster if you try to pan fry it.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • Wambli SkaWambli Ska Moderator Posts: 25,045 Senior Member
    Six-Gun wrote: »
    The raised screen/oven method is how we did bluefish when I was growing up, which is another oily disaster if you try to pan fry it.
    Yep, my standard way of cooking blue fish is on the grill with some wood chips and on an old cookie sheet that I'll throw out when I'm done. Slow cooking to let the oil work out of the meat just until the internal temp is hot, and every once in a while I sop up the excess oil with some paper towels. It make for nice moist fish!

    Also oily fish do not freeze well. If I get fresh King, Spanish Mackarel or Blue Fish I will cook it right away and then freeze the cooked meat. It stays MUCH better that way.
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton
  • BuffcoBuffco Senior Member Posts: 6,202 Senior Member
    Butter cats (yellow bullhead) are a delicacy, and so are their brown and black cousins.. As are any catfish about one lb or less.

    Any bigger, and they ain't fit to eat. Yes, I guess I've never had them "cooked right".

    The one 8 lb channel cat I had was mush. Barely fishy tasting mush.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 9,333 Senior Member
    I like whole catfish about 7 or 8 inches long on the bone. The fillets are OK, but are often overcooked. Plus, I know a little too much about farm raised catfish fillets.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 21,476 Senior Member
    Six-Gun wrote: »
    The raised screen/oven method is how we did bluefish when I was growing up, which is another oily disaster if you try to pan fry it.

    Bluefish is another one I like baked in the oven on a raised screen. Too oily for frying. And it smokes well if you go low heat for a longer time to render the oil out and then finish hot.

    Making your own raised screen is pretty easy, too. Just go to a store that sells replacement oven racks and buy one. Cut to fit a cookie sheet with legs bent to give 1-1 1/2" clearance between rack and pan. Go get a small roll of STAINLESS STEEL screen wire and cut to fit top of the rack. Coat screen with your favorite oil before putting the fish on it to avoid sticking, and you're in business!

    The rendered oil from baking makes a decent bait dip for catching more fish. Works on feathered baits and soft plastics well.
    A double action revolver is a semiauto firearm. It fires once for every trigger pull.



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