The Washington State Pond Jumperz are strong supporters of catch and release bass fishing. We believe that releasing the bass we catch helps ensure the future of our sport. But catch and release fishing is only a part of this conservation effort. Fish care and handling are also essential to ensure the survival of fish that are release back into the lake. John Hope at BassResources.com has written a great article about the proper care of caught fish when retaining them in a livewell during a tournament. Please read these tips.
A working livewell is a requirement for all WSPJ tournaments. This can be a stock livewell that is built into your boat or it can be something you have constructed. Building your own livewell will require a bit of research on your part. Each boat setup is different and there are many ideas floating around on what type of livewell system to install. As with any DIY project everyone has an opinion. Our suggestions below are intended to provide you with a general look at what is needed for a good, working livewell.
A few key things to remember for any livewell build.
- Buy a white cooler, it stays cooler in the summer.
- Cooler size should be at least a 90 quart. Bigger is better.
- Use an additional battery to run the livewell.
- Use a pre-built aeration kit as the easiest option
- Plan for a way to pump water in and out of your container.
(Fill Your Cooler)
Pre built aeration systems are designed to easily be installed in a container like a cooler. Some kits, like the Super Fish Saver Kit or the Super Saver Livewell Kit have a spray bar connected to a bilge pump. Other systems like the Keep Alive Portable have built in aeration to mix outside air with re-circulated water. There are many tutorials online on how to build your own livewell. Here are some of our favorites.
If you have any questions about getting a livewell into your boat, feel free to e-mail us or come to a club meeting and ask our members.