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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Many clubs and organizations have seasonal fishing contests for many different species. Some NJ fishing clubs do not recognize drum fish as game fish, nor have any catagories for drums. Seems some peolpe feel that bigger drum fish would just be weighed in, and not eaten, if there any incentive to kill them.

I've only hooked two in my life, one last yr, and on in 1962 on the Big Day....so I am happy to hear of their rebound.

So my question..do you consider drum a sport fish....and are they edible (to you)?
 

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If the law of the land considers them gamefish, then so do I. Since there are length limits on black drum in NJ, then I consider them gamefish.

Drum are very edible, but not in those huge sizes. But really, what big old fish IS edible and tasty?? ;)
 

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Originally posted by Fly Ty R:
If the law of the land considers them gamefish, then so do I. Since there are length limits on black drum in NJ, then I consider them gamefish.

Drum are very edible, but not in those huge sizes. But really, what big old fish IS edible and tasty?? ;)
Give me a fillet from a 50lb striper any day of the week.
 

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The Black Drum is a money fish for the NJ Angler Surf Fishing tourney. They started weighing them at last years event after a bunch were landed the year before and didn't count. The Contest between Striper Surf and the Bass Barn last year came down to big drum being caught by Striper Surf. They are back for sure. I am still waiting to get one myself.

GSBB
 

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I would love to get the chance to land a big old drum. I attempted to go a couple of years ago..but the trip got cancelled due to lack of interest :( Other than that, no attempts to catch em...
 

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Caught my first Drum in the surf here in Cape May in the FALL of 2004, which is very uncommon for that time of year. My buddy and I got two each that day, all around 15lbs. They hit unbelievably hard, faught great, and tasted really good. For me they are game fish.

The beauty about landing a drum is that you don't have to do anything different. I caught them on my striper rig with a circle hook on clam.
 

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I've been Drum fishing the Dbay since the early 80's, they are great sport, make headshaking runs then when they get tired, they still won't give up. They use their broad body's sideways against the current to prevent you from pulling them in, with use of too light of tackle, they'll literally go belly up before you can get them boatside! Our longest drum fight we got in video, the tape doesn't lie it took 52 minutes to boat. The fish was in the 70 lb. range and was caught on an IGFA 20 lb. trolling rod on a TLD 5 loaded w/ 20 lb. mono. 30 lb. tackle is more aptly suited for Drum fishing and is what we usually use for them. Our biggest Drum was 91 lbs. Don't go undergunned for them w/ less than 30 lb. tackle especially if you are going to release them, there is no need to keep your 3 per man limit of these fish, 1 good one per man is more than enough. We've never kept more than 2 Drum, and have had numerous double digit trips. What kills me is I continually see folk, particularly all the charterboats on my dock, line the docks up with big Drumfish which I'll never get! These guys are out w/ different groups every fishable night so you'd thenk they'd explain the importance of conservation to their groups to ensure the future of this fishery & their business! Granted they are alot of skin and bone, but you still get alot of meat from a big Drum. The meat is just ok, cant compare to striped bass, tog, fluke, etc. it doesn't freeze well at all so there is no need to fill up your freezer w/ it. Really, it's only "good" when smoked in my opionion! All this said, it would be best for those who target Drum to only keep what can be eaten fresh in order to err on the conservative side, which is in the best interest of both the fish and fishermen!
 

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i would keep a puppy drum up to 25 lbs before i would keep a big one..better tasting.. great smoked and as parm too and yes i think there gam fish.. one heck of a time fileting them... need a chainsaw...
 

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I 2nd the fileting Philly. I heard the bigger ones don't taste that good, (very different than the smaller ones), plus some have the worms. I've only had the puppies myself, and I thought it was absolutely delicious. My son has tried many different fish and he still says that drum is his favorite.
 

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I've been trying for them in the surf for years and always seem to just miss them, but I think for the surf fishermen that is where the challenge is - you really have to put in some time to get one from the surf. Also, everyone who I've talked to says they are fantastic in the eating department. I did an interview with Phil Fors about them in this months NJ Angler to try to understand what it takes - I can tell you I would want to be on the other end of the line of a 78lb drum. I'd probably let a very big fish go and eat the puppys.
 

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in 1989 i caught one in great bay 101 1/2 pounds,yesterday had three 60 to 85 pounds and 54 inches long.i use 12 foot surf rods and 20 pound test line never fought any of them over a half hour.never caught big drum in deep water.puppies i have caught deep but not large drum.my friend caught 5 today in the rain up to 65 pounds.in 4 foot of water.louis
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
"i use 12 foot surf rods and 20 pound test line "

Hey Louis STOP spilling those secrets! There ARE lurkers here!!
 
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