Re: IGFA records

[Bulletin Board]

Posted by Joel N Rosenthal on 2013-03-24 08:31:41 in reply to Re: Tarpon and Bonefish Florida Legislation changes posted by Bill Bishop on 2013-03-24 05:34:24

Your post makes the case, through your own words, for disallowing tarpon kills in Florida.You wrote:"Part of this enjoyment is attempting to capture tarpon within a set of standards that demands my upmost(sic) ability and skill level.".."Time will tell but my efforts won't be driven or altered by merely having my name posted in a record book."
So what is to keep you from pursuing IGFA records according to IGFA standards ? Nothing, except if kill tags are abolished you won't get your name in the record book-which you say is irrelevant to your efforts. Really, what the record books are all about is neatly summed up in your Freudian typo in which you say that tarpon fishing provides an economic "boast"(sic).
What records are about is the recognition-and does it matter to those 50 anglers so much that the fish you got on 16 lb tippet was a few pounds or ounces bigger than someone else's?I submit that the skill involved in successfully subduing a 100 lb fish on IGFA legal gear is no different than subduing one that is 2 lbs heavier. Want the recognition for the skill that takes? ? strap a go pro to your chest and post the video on youtube-and your apparent skill and good fortune will receive the same or greater worldwide recognition as if it were reflected in the record books---and if you seek to catch the fish for personal gratification, then you don't need, as you've said, public accolades-just the self satisfaction of leveling the playing field with the fish and winning. You've admitted yourself that someone whose opinion matters to you recognizes your skill-even without your name in the record books-by inviting you to fish an elite tournament for 5 years.
So by your own standards, which I am sure few would disagree with, and most would commend, you make a strong case for abolishing kill tags. They simply aren't necessary to achieve the goals you claim to aspire to.
World records are a vestige of an era where technology didn't permit recognition of records without killing the fish.The IGFA has gone a long way in adapting to the technological changes of this information era-so that hand scale certification and release of record fish is the norm now. Record tarpon unfortunately are too big for hand scales, and often are caught in water too deep to allow weighing "on land" by jumping out of the boat. But eventually technology will allow for accurate weighing without killing the fish, and perhaps without even removing the fish from the water.
And yes, Florida has lots of world records-in fact ALL the present men's and women's tarpon flyrod records come from Florida-but recreational fishing in Florida is a multibillion dollar industry, and the impact of those 50 anglers you describe looking for world records on fly-or perhaps a few hundred looking for conventional records- possibly going to Sierra Leone or elsewhere in efforts to get their names in record books, will be negligible.What brings anglers here is the presence of the fish, a healthy fishery and the comforts of a vacation destination.Without kill tags, even world record seeking tarpon anglers will continue to come here for the tarpon fishing-if only for the practice and the self satisfaction that you say drives you.
And finally-do you really think that your catching a 100 lb plus tarpon on 16 lb tippet is the same as what it took 50 years ago before composite carbon fiber rods, fluorocarbon leaders, heat shedding clothing and all the other technological developments that give present day anglers huge advantages over their predecessors?Most records(excluding all tackle records), therefore, are merely snapshots of an era, and not a basis to compare present skills with those of other eras involving different methods and technologies.IGFA's angling rules change over time, often in very significant ways, but make no mistake, records are all about recognition-or boasting , and from what you've written, Bill, you don't need to kill a tarpon or even hope to kill one, for your angling skills to be recognized.

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