Bluegill - Big Bluegill

Do you love big bluegill?

Keepers,Eaters,Fryers...How big do you go and why.

I was just reading a topic about this on another Report forum and it picqued my interest.Along with the propsed Big Gill alliance, Mr Rorer was talking about. Anyhow here in SE Wi, we have a limited number of options, to where you can catch some true giant gills, for our area here in the north. I can think of 2 that are about an hour, to an hour and a half from me.One, I won't go to due to money and just the insane craziness on the lake, the other I try to fish about once a week if I can.This lake produces really nice gills from the tato chips, to the big guys.

Normally, I try not to keep anything over 8 inches.I make exceptions, for my girl though, as she likes to add to the fry when she gets the chance to go.Many lakes in my area, have the average 5-7in gills which I try to go with most of the time. As a 25 limit there is more than enough for a meal or 2 for both of us.

I know in the south, you have a greater growing season so there is more possible chance to regenrate those big uns, than we do up here.Not passing any judgement on what anyone keeps though, you buy a license you have the right to keep what you want.

Example I read a report about some people keeping a 5 gallon bucketful of 4 to 5inch gills.Could be true, could be false may eventually help the fishery out in that particular lake, but highly illegal,Don't even know what they would do with that many fish though.Just random thoughts. Curious to see how selection plays out in different parts of the Gill globe and any reasons why.

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Comment by Jim Gronaw on August 18, 2009 at 7:51pm
I love eating bluegills, and I tend to keep any where from 6 to 15 fish if I am in the keeping mood. There is a 15 fish limit on gills in MD. My prefered keepers are from 8 to 9 1/2 inches. I have disciplined myself over the years to release 10 inch and up fish, if I am fortunate enough to locate and catch them. Some fisheries can tolerate more harvest of a specific size structure of bluegills and other lakes may be different. High numbers of 7 1/2 to 8 1/2 inch fish make for great eaters, and are more abundant than the bulls. My wife and I can eat 15 fillets at a meal with other side dishes. 15 fish will give us two meals, as I freeze them in vacuum packs for specific meal sizes. I also do this same basic approach for crappies and perch. A few 12 to 15 inch bass now and then also make for excellent eating.
Comment by Rob Garner on August 10, 2009 at 7:58pm
What up fishshaped I took a bunch of 12" and better perch today out of Michigan I am going opn the boat tommorrow.
Comment by fishshaped on August 3, 2009 at 8:13pm
5 gallon buckets of fish in wi. has to be the hmongs, see them all over in the spring on the channels for crappie. and on he rivers later season they make fish paste of them. very dodgey caracters these people, they move fast because they know what their doing is illegal, and know that us law abiding fellows are reporting them to the dnr. your right about helping stunted fisherys though. could use a few hmong on my lake to take care of the little guy's.
Comment by Jimbo on August 3, 2009 at 6:31pm
In the event that I do catch a bream over 8 inches (rarely) that biz-**** is food!
Comment by Howard Webster on July 29, 2009 at 5:44pm
it all depends on how well the fish will bite and how hungry the fisherman is
Comment by steve b on July 29, 2009 at 9:37am
Under 6" is just too difficult for my ole impaired hands to filet, without fileting my old impaired hands. From there, to 8" pretty much covers everything thing else here in N.E. Oh.. If I were to catch a 10"'er or better, yeah, photo and release. steve b
Comment by Lord of the Fly , Rods on July 24, 2009 at 10:57pm
All it takes is practice.
Comment by Rob Garner on July 24, 2009 at 8:04pm
Yeah but I haven'tfilleted a bass in a long time.Maybe when the water cools down I 'll take a couple of smaller ones to try.Actually I think Mod has his fillet technique on here and that is pretty much the same as I do mine just not as fast or as well yet.
Comment by Lord of the Fly , Rods on July 24, 2009 at 1:34pm
Sure ,I filet 90% of the gills I catch,and I do it with an electric knife. The wife and kid just love not having to mess with the bones, although i enjoy them both ways on the bone or off.
Comment by Mac on July 24, 2009 at 11:05am
Here in N. Florida lots of folks prefer the smaller one to the great bi-uns. Do y'all filet them just like you do a bass? I might try that on the next big ones we catch.

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