: Coming home with fish from Canada


d2bucktail
06-11-2002, 08:04 AM
Hello,

Can anyone give me advise for packaging fish that we intend to bring home from a Canadian fishing trip. I'm not planning to fill a cooler, but my wife would like me to bring back a few meals of pike and maybe some walleyes. Since there is a sort-of size limit on pike(only 1 over 27" I believe), are we required to keep the fish whole (incl head and tail)? I'd prefer to fillet them and I'm fine with keeping a patch of skin on them. Is this ok to do?

Thx for any advise you can provide for me.

D2Bucktail

Mahumba
06-11-2002, 08:09 AM
Hi Buck tail,

One square inch of skin is to be left on each fillet for identification purposes.

If you can freeze your catch before leaving do so and pack in ice blocks and not cubes. Cubes melt to quickly.

If you can't freeze it before you leave pack the fish in a layer of ice cubes then put ice blocks on top of the cubes. (cooler of course) The blocks will prevent the cubes from melting to fast.

Roger Mayer.

d2bucktail
06-11-2002, 09:45 AM
Hi Mahumba,

Thx for your reply. Your suggested method is what I'd prefer to do, but for counting purposes, I'm not sure they'd (border agents) like an uncountable frozen block of fish to deal with. Have you crossed the border with fish packaged this way? Have they questioned your packaging method? Just trying to prevent any trouble at the border. Thx again for your reply.

D2Bucktail

babamel
06-11-2002, 09:50 AM
I think you are allowed pike under 27 and 1 over 36". A total of 4 Pike, they can all be under 27 or 3 under and one over 36.

WAeyes
06-11-2002, 10:50 AM
How can anyone tell what length they are if you fillet them? I have gotten busted for this one...make sure you know the regs for this before you go transporting un-measurable fish.

d2bucktail
06-11-2002, 11:31 AM
WAeyes,

That's precisously why I started this thread. I'd like to know how to pkg fish properly so I don't have any problem at the border. In my experience, leaving the fish whole (gutted of course) causes it to taste like *&%^# even though it may prevent problems at the board. I'd prefer to leave the fish in the lake if the alternative is to have very fishy tasting fish. Can anyone help?

Thx,

D2Bucktail

LuckyKetch
06-11-2002, 01:14 PM
It is all explained in the regs. A little cloudy but it is there.

Ottertail
06-12-2002, 01:14 PM
you can bring your fish back cleaned and wrapped. Just leave one square inch of skin on. The size restrictions are lake and district dependent and are only enforced on the water or prior to cleaning.

ottertail
06-12-2002, 01:15 PM
Forgot to mention, only 1 fish per package and the limit depends on if you have a conservation license or regular.

d2bucktail
06-12-2002, 01:32 PM
Thx ottertail! That's the kind of response I was looking for. Of course I will check the regs to confirm this, but I recall it being somewhat confusing in print. Thx again for your help.

D2Bucktail

bigfish1965
06-12-2002, 04:28 PM
Ottertails response was incorrect if you are coming from Ontario. Anytime you are removing fish from an area that has size limits, you must package them so that the size can be determined by a Conservation Officer. So simply gut and remove the gills until you get it home. For more information go to www.mnr.gov.on.ca/MNR/fishing/gen.html

bigfish1965
06-12-2002, 04:33 PM
I thought I would save you the time and try to copy the reg.'s here



---------------------------------------------------------------------
Many anglers travel long distances or cross international borders to enjoy the adventure of fishing in Ontario. We want to make sure that if you are packaging fish for the trip home, you are doing it according to regulations that help us monitor and enforce laws in place to protect fisheries resources. When packaging fish you must ensure that a conservation officer can determine:
the number of fish that you have;
the species that you have in your possession; and
the length of fish or fillets when a size limit is in effect (see Size Limits).

Fish length must be readily measurable at all times for fish taken from waterbodies where length limits apply, unless the fish:

are being prepared for immediate consumption;
are prepared at an overnight accommodation for storage;
are being transported on the water from a temporary overnight accommodation to that person's primary resi-dence and that person is NOT engaged in sport fishing;
or
are being transported overland.
Fish may be gilled and gutted, but the ability to measure the length of the fish must not be affected.

When packaging fish, anglers should:

Leave a large patch of the skin on all fillets for identification;
Pack or freeze fish separately and flat so that they can be counted, identified and measured (clear plastic bags or clear plastic wrap is preferred).
-----------------------------------------------------------------

I'm probably more confused than I was before.

Rather Be Lucky
06-12-2002, 06:42 PM
With a vac-sealer and cut your own bags, you can gut, gill and individualy freeze them. I butterfly the fillets and leave all the skin on, put 3-4 in a bag, seal and freeze. they remain countable and visable. Have even taken mounters home, frozen whole (guts and all) protected the fins and good to go. The meat was just fine after the visit to the taxidermist. Just like ice fishing. Swede

outdoor fanatic
06-12-2002, 07:39 PM
You can take 6 pike of which 2 can be over 24" one of which may be over 34". They can be filleted once they leave the lake, so you can fillet them for transport. Leave the skin. Just came back from Ontario and no problems. Be careful of the walleye slot limit if going to region 19. NO fish between 16" and 22". You may only have four in your possession and only one of those may be over 22". Some guys at a different cabin on the same lake we were on were caught with 10 fish in the slot size and were fined $120 per fish. Shoulda booted em out of the country in my opinion, but be careful with the walleye because they are watching this hard (as they should be).

WAeyes
06-12-2002, 08:06 PM
>Fish length must be readily measurable at all times for fish
>taken from waterbodies where length limits apply, unless the
>fish:

>are being transported overland.

What does this statement mean? Is transported over land mean on a plane or does it mean transported on land like a vehicle? To me this is very confusing and by reading this, I would not feel safe bringing any fish home? Sounds like catch and release time to avoid a healthy fine for an unintentional crime.

Paul H
06-13-2002, 03:08 AM
The way I read this is - they MUST be able to be measuerd if caught from a lake with length limit.


From http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/MNR/fishing/trans.html


Fish length must be readily measurable at all times for fish taken from waterbodies where length limits apply, unless the fish:

are being prepared for immediate consumption;
are prepared at an overnight accommodation for storage;
are being transported on the water from a temporary overnight
accommodation to that person's primary resi-dence and that
person is NOT engaged in sport fishing;
or
are being transported overland.

Fish may be gilled and gutted, but the ability to measure the
length of the fish must not be affected.

When packaging fish, anglers should:

Leave a large patch of the skin on all fillets for identification;
Pack or freeze fish separately and flat so that they can be
counted, identified and measured (clear plastic bags or clear
plastic wrap is preferred).

chrism
06-13-2002, 05:22 AM
The same question came up at camp (Manitoba) last week, and the C.O. present said , and I quote:
"pack the two fillet's from one fish per bag, leave on a patch (1") of skin, and freeze them flat so that the skin patches are visible through the bag"
"we have a formula for calculating raw length from fillets"
"we do know if the fillet has been trimmed to fit under the slot"
"If the rules are broken, chances are you will get caught"

On my way home, I went through a checkpoint on a blind corner, and they were checking everything - there was about 15 c.o.'s, complete with measuring tapes...They had no problem with fish packaged as listed above. Didn't see any whole fish, but there was a generator powering a small freezer which I was told was getting full of confiscated fish - mostly from over limit offenders.

hope this helps...

Big Tim
06-13-2002, 05:32 AM
We were stoped & checked last year, along 105 comming out of ear Falls. All our fish were Filleted, individually wrapped, with skin still on(stopped skinning just before the skin was cut off, leaving the whole skin intact, making it much easier to finish the job once thawed) All our fish were wraped in brown butcher paper & the officers never opened one to check what was actually in the pack(they could have, we had extra tape & paper with us). We just marked eack package with what was in it. After checking our licences & counting the # of fish He sent us on our way with a Thank You for visiting Ontario. We had a guide the first day on Lac Seul & he was the one that showed us how to pack the fish. Just stay within the rules, be polite if stopped & unless the officer got up on the wrong side of the bed (which you can't control) you should be fine. Also we were NOT stopped this year at all.
one more thing, depending on how long a drive you have (we spend 18 hours in the truck before we're home)Dry ice is avalible in many locations, for only a few $'s your prizes are going to get home solid & dry