How-To: Drop Weights Make Releasing Fish a Cinch

Australians for years have used drop weights or made their own as a quick, sure, non-invasive alternative to venting.

Until this fall, the only legal way to release deepwater fish suffering from barotrauma ("inflated" swim bladder) in the Gulf of Mexico was to poke a hole in its side with a venting tool. Now, anglers can legally decide how they want to release such fish. Australians for years have bought drop weights (at tackle shops) or made their own as a quick, sure, non-invasive alternative to venting. (You can also buy devices which will do the same thing though with a bit more sophistication, such as the Seaqualizer.)

This video shows how easily you can release fish that have “blown up” at the surface and greatly reduce mortality.