Summer temps can stress black bass


Senior Member

Same old debate, do summer tournaments harm bass populations and defeat the purpose of special regulations?
We really don't know because we have no control to measure the impact. By that I mean an identical lake with no bass tournaments on it. Not going to happen.

The other option would be to pick a lake, monitor the tournaments for 2 or 3 years, closely monitor mortaility, and then close the lake to tournaments for 2 or 3 years, and assess the bass population.

Until you have some baseline, whether or not summer tournaments harm fish is pure speculation.

I know Lake Oconee is a very shallow lake, and I've watched many weigh ins in the summer there Surface temps are regularly in the high 80's. Typcially they release the fish right at the ramp, with all the water pollution from dozens of boats. An hour after the affair is over the water will be covered with dead fish, most in the 1 1/2 pound range.

In my opinion, it would be more sporting and a better use of the resource to do away with the charade that is is "catch and RELEASE" and throw all the fish into a cooler of ice and donate them to a local food bank.

I also think the blame lies directly on the sponsoring organizations which continue to use 1950's technology in the 2020's.


Senior Member
I glanced at a fishing tournament on TV the other day and they had "officials: on the boats. They would weigh them on the boat and release them where they were caught. I think that would be best if tournaments are to continue.
Or do as said above and just keep all and let folks who want them have them or donate to food banks.


Senior Member
I’m not a tournament fisherman but I do fish a lot , and I live near a very popular lake and can hardly catch a bass that hasn’t been caught and am on the water a lot and very seldom do I see a bass floating
I’m not a tournament fisherman but I do fish a lot , and I live near a very popular lake and can hardly catch a bass that hasn’t been caught and am on the water a lot and very seldom do I see a bass floating
Just think about this for a minute. There are literally millions of fish of different species in a lake say like Lanier. Those fish die all the time for various reasons. How many dead fish period do you see floating??? Let me speak from personal experience as someone who fished Lanier 5 days a week normally...very few. They are still dying they just don’t all float.


Senior Member
Tournaments are no more the cause of dead fish than a fork is the cause for one's obesity. Poor live-well practices are the cause of stressed and dead fish, not tournament fishing.

Poor fishing habits are a culprit as well. Fishing line-thru swimbaits should be made illegal if fish mortality is the true concern and not misguided dis-taste for tournament fishing and tournament fisherman.


Senior Member
so can summer time fishing. maybe you guys should stop fishing if you are so worried about the fish.
Prexactly. That fish mortality is somehow magically related to a fisherman's purpose for catching them is absurd to my mind.

Catching fish in the summer stresses them? Of course. I doubt they ever feel an over-abundance of calm being ripped out of the water by their mouths.

Keeping the fish in live-wells without proper aeration and mineral balance results in poor fish releases? Obviously.

None of the reasons fish die as a result of fishing has anything to do with "tournament fishing." If any Joe were to go fishing and have the same practices as the tournament guys, you'd get the same results.

Sounds like a bunch of PETA members around here. ;)::ke:

All that being said, the dead fish around the boat docks after tournaments does nothing to ingratiate folks toward tournament fishing or fisherman.
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He ask a guestion,people are answering it.Tourney boys gettin panties in a
Amen. They love to defend their actions come **** or high water.

Does taking a fish out of its home for an extended period of time, placing in water that is generally considerably warmer than where it was living, riding it around getting the crap beat out of for 5-6 hours, putting a cull tag in its lip, taking it out to measure several times a day, taking it to a weigh-in laid in a sack with several other fish, holding up the biggest one or two so you can post a pic on social media so you can become sponsored (aka 10% off at Hammonds), and then chunking it back in the lake miles away from where it was caught. Nah...probably doesn’t mess with the fish at all in comparison to the guy who catches it and immediately returns it back to the water.