Home / Goondiwindi Classic 2023 – Fish Handling


  • Ensure that all objects and surfaces the fish touches are wet and cool.
  • Support the weight of the fish at ALL times. Never hang a fish by its jaws, gills or tail. Place a hand under its belly or rest it on a wet towel, damp boat carpet or a wet measuring mat.
  • Strictly limit the fish’s time out of the water. Try holding your breath while the fish is exposed to the air, if you need another breath, so does the fish!
  • Be organised. Have your camera or phone, measuring mat and long-nosed pliers (for hook removal) laid out and ready to go before you lift the fish out of the water.
  • Remove the hook or hooks as quickly as possible using long-nosed pliers. Remember, de-barbed hooks come out of fish and people much more easily, so consider flattening your barbs.
  • If the fish is hooked too deeply for easy hook extraction using long-nosed pliers, cut the line or leader as close as possible to the hook. Don’t attempt amateur surgery.
  • Return the fish to the water promptly and support it in an upright position facing into any current or flow while it recovers strength. Do not swish it back and forth.
  • When the fish seems recovered and ready, simply allow it to swim free of your grip, but watch to ensure it doesn’t float back to the surface.


Thank you to each and every one of you for enabling us to make this event a success. We truly appreciate your support!