How long can I keep fish

Discussion in 'The Great Outdoors' started by jessin, Sep 6, 2006.

  1. jessin

    jessin Well-Known Member

    Aug 24, 2005
    without cleaning them? My family and I went night fishing and caught 5 keeper catfish in the 2-3' range,but I dont want to clean them tonight. I put them on ice at 10:30.How long can I wait to clean them? By clean I mean gut and skin. Can I wait for tomorrow morning? Thanks alot :)
  2. boonieman

    boonieman Well-Known Member

    Dec 27, 2005
    Meade Co Kentucky
    I've done the same thing with no ill effects on me, at least not in my opinion. :shrug: Were they alive when you put them on ice? It's always better to clean them right away, but as long as you had them covered in ice, they should be fine to clean tomorrow morning.

  3. gilberte

    gilberte Well-Known Member Supporter

    Sep 25, 2004
    If you get right to them this morning they will be all right, but they aren't going to taste as good as if you had cleaned them quickly. Improper handling is how a lot of folks wind up deciding that they don't like to eat fish :)
  4. Bearfootfarm

    Bearfootfarm Hello, there anybody in there.....? Supporter

    Jul 12, 2006
    Eastern North Carolina
    Fish markets keep them a few days sometimes. I like to at least gut them so they will bleed out some
  5. There is suppose to be a way on how you can tell how fresh your fish is by looking at the gills. If they are still very pink to red in color they are still very fresh. A faded pink I believe is not very fresh. I remember seeing on one of those cooking shows where the chef picks up the fish and looks its gills over and then takes a big whiff of it. Usually when I get in late from fishing I wrap mine in a plastic bag, stick them in the refrigerator for the night and clean them the next morning. I don't whiff'em though!