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Just curious on how the fourm feels on mounting big Muskies or should they all be released. Point and case: I was fishing with a long time friend last Friday who always wanted to mount 1 big Muskie. He has released several fish over the long time trophy standard of 50" / 30#. But it seems with in the last 5 years this has grown to like 52+" / 35+#'s. We had a really good afternoon going 12 for 17 with 4 legal fish with 1 being 49" and 28#'s and losing 1 really big fish, right up until the very last fish of the night . Now let me take a step back, before we left the dock he did tell me that if we caught 1 over 51" and 32# he was going to mount it. Which I replied its your choice and knowing that catching a fish like that doesn't happen every day I wasn't that concerned. Well the down rod with a jointed Loke gets crushed right a 8PM. 15 minutes later we land a 53" / 34# fish that was officilally weighed. Now where I think there might be some controversy with some of the board members is, we killed that fish. I personally was okay with this decision my friend made. My standards are higher maybe because I know that catching a 40#er will probably never happen to me so I probably wont have to make that decision but I was still okay with his decision. What are your thoughts.
 

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i think its tottaly find to keep and mount that fish. I am at the point that ill never get one mounted again. but that is a personal choice. I have become that C&R guy. the last fish i got mounted was only because it died after a tournamnet.
 

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Release and get a replica. I dont think its cool to kill a 15-20+ year old fish. but that is my opinion. your buddy did what he wanted which he has the right to do since he caught it..I think. MAYBE.. If I caught a legal Tiger I would get it mounted besause they rarely reproduce. so it would only be taking one fish out of the lake. A fish that is 53" probably has alot of good years to spawn So I personally wouldnt do it. good job on the good day..
 

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Both!

Just understand how long it will take to replace that fish.
And also understand that allot of other sportsmen made sure you had the chance to take that fish.
But take it if you wish but please leave it if you can.
BB
 

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Well, with as nice as those replicas look, I would go with that. Here is one of my clients with his fish done by Fittante Taxidermy in WI.
 

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I will release unless it is a world record. Even with a world record I would still try to keep it alive as long as I can in case a release is possible. Just make sure that photos are taken from several angles and lots of them. Get good measurements and the replica will be great plus it lasts longer than a standard mount.
 

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Im all for C&R but if its a fish of a lifetime go ahead and mount it. I mean sure Ive seen some great replicas but with a good taxidermist you cant beat the real thing.
 

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I have no peoblem with a fish like that being taken. It is his fish and his right. By the way nice fish
 

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Good Job! nothing wrong with killing a few fish. That fish will now live forever on a wall, and will never be forgotten! My future mounts will most likely be replicas, for the simple fact that skin mounts dont look as good in 20 yrs, as they do when you bring them home.
 

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Good job boys and girls for keeping this thead civil so far....

My .02 is the same as many others here- get a replica. They last longer and look amazing and the fish gets to swim away and make more muskies. But it's his license that he paid for and if it's legal, then he's a big boy and can decide to keep it if he wants too.

Me, I couldn't keep one. World record or not. Just not my thing. I could give two craps about a record or my name in some book somewhere.

Sounds like a great fish though!
 

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I think the real question is for the ones that would take it home for a mount....why would you take the fish home and kill it, when you can get the same effect, without killing it? Is it just knowing that the fish on your wall is THEE fish that you caught? I guess I just see mounts as 3D pictures, but if indeed that is how you look at the mount, then I can understand. That would be the same thing as a hunter keeping a replica bear or deer head on the lovely wall of death. However, in my opinion, I still feel like if you did decide to keep the fish for the mount, it better be a true TROPHY, not just a personal best.
 
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