The Use of Hobbled Gill Nets in a Commercial Fishery of Lake Carl Blackwell, Oklahoma

A modified gill net known as a hobbled gill net was utilized in a commercial fishery in 3,300-acre Lake Carl Blackwell in Central Oklahoma from September, 1957 through December, 1958. A total of 3,200 fish weighing 20,252 pounds was taken in 1,085 net days, a net day being 300 feet of net fished 24 hours. Non-game fishes represented 97 percent by weight of the total catch. Hobbled gill nets proved particularly effective in taking flathead catfish, which comprised 63.4 percent by weight of the total catch. The average catch of flathead catfish increased from 4.9 to 13.0 and 14.6 pounds per net day for 3.0-, 3.5- and 4.0-inch bar mesh nets respectively. In general, the catch of all other species decreased as the mesh size increased from 3 to 4 inches. Hobbled gill nets may be an efficient modification over standard commercial gill nets and a more selective gear for large flathead catfish than other entanglement gears.

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