Before diving into the world of Carp Fishing, please take your time to familiarize yourself with basic Carp care and Safety. Carp Anglers are some of the most considerate and caring anglers on the planet. Many of us invest into special safety equipment to make sure the fish is not harmed. We also clean up after ourselves and often after other fisherman as well. It’s important to make sure that other Carp Anglers will enjoy the same fish for years to come so please do your best to not harm the fish. It is also important to always clean up after yourself and leave the area in better condition then when you arrived.
At Monster Carp we do NOT kill or eat the fish. Although Carp can be quite tasty and it is eaten all over the world, many of US waters are polluted with PCBs and Mercury and it is not recommended to eat the fish. We go by “Catch and Release ONLY!” Rule.
It is highly recommended to never take the Carp out of the water without proper net/weight sling or a mat. Never lay the carp down on the ground or drag it across any surface. Most Carp you will encounter have never been caught or encountered humans. This means that they are in shock and quite aggressive. Give them a little time to calm down before you lift them up and hold them. Always wet your hands and mat before you handle the carp or put them down on the mat.Slime plays an important role in protecting the fish from bacteria. Removing slime with dry hands exposes the fish to harm.
Here are couple of different ways and levels to Carp Care.
Bare Bones approach – The most basic and cheapest way to make sure no harm is done is to get in the water to about hip height to unhook the fish and hold it for a picture. If you don’t want to get wet or cold you can buy Waders. They range from $25 bucks and up. When you catch a Carp, chances are they have never been caught before and will be aggressive. Please allow time for them to calm down in order to hold them.
Basic Care – We highly urge you to purchase Carp Net and a Carp Mat. This will enable you to capture the fish safely and give you an ability to transport it to your Mat for picture opportunity. These are the most essential pieces of Carp equipment out there. When done, you can rinse these and dry them in the sun. Use a large garbage bag for transportation.
Advanced Care – If you would like to weight your fish you can purchase Weight Sling, Scale and a Floating crib. Sling will enable you to weight the fish (although you can do it with a Carp Net as well). Sling just makes it easier. Scales can be quite expensive, I recommend just getting a $15-20 Rapala scale. It’s cheap, goes up to 50lbs and pretty accurate. Floating Crib enables you to keep the fish in the water and contain it for best in water picture opportunity.
Expert Care – in order to get the most accurate weight measurement you will need to get a Weight Pod. Many carp anglers also use a special liquid that helps Carp lips heal. There is also a none floating cradle that can be set on the shore/contain water and enable anglers to water the fish before a picture. Cradles also act as the Mat. There are also very accurate and Certified scales that are quite expensive but most expert Carp Anglers swear by them.
Thanks for reading and please take care of your fish.
Monster Carp Team