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View Full Version : Charter boat captain gets to keep big fish??!!



bluestar
02-28-2007, 11:28 AM
I just saw a very interesting fishing case on People's Court.

A guy chartered a Rhode Island boat for tuna fishing, and the trip yielded a 700 lb tuna. The guy obviously thought any fish produced from the trip is his, but the captain said, by fishing industry custom, any giant tuna over 73 inches belong to the boat/captain and not the customers.

I have never heard of this custom. Can anyone confirm if there is such a thing on the west coast? And if so, what fish the custom covers?

Toxic_Waste
02-28-2007, 11:42 AM
Well, if there is such a custom, whether it be on the east or west coast, it sounds pretty unfair. That's like paying your money for a fancy restaurant dinner, then having the chef come out and eat the best of your plate and leaving you the rest!

fishhogg
02-28-2007, 11:57 AM
thats pretty funny, as for the west coast, the law is that "boat limits" are for passengers only, customers can share there catch with whoever. As far as the crew same rule applys, crew CAN NOT share there catch with customers, now if the deck hand puts out a rod and catches the biggest salmon of the day, an the passengers need 1 more fish for boat limits....
1 un happy customer
1 legal deck hand
So what was the outcome on the court case?

NRJohn
02-28-2007, 12:05 PM
Same rules apply in Hawaii as well. Unless you have a specific understanding before going out the fish is the boats. I'll never understand that. What's the purpose of charting a boat for in the first place? They certainly don't do that in Mexico.

kromebrite
02-28-2007, 12:30 PM
I've had the same experience with Hawaii fishing. All fish are the boats property unless otherwise arranged. The captain will usually cut off some big filets for your dinner, though. I'm not sure how this started over there, but I disagree with it. Always clarify before booking in Hawaii.

vito
02-28-2007, 12:33 PM
And that is exactly why I changed my vacation from Hawaii to Mex this year. I'll be darned if I'm going to pay for a charter and give all of the fish to someone I hardly know. They are getting the cash too!

Toxic_Waste
02-28-2007, 12:44 PM
Wow -- the fish belong to the boat??? Even though you paid to go fishing? Here I go again with a goofy comparison: That's like me going grocery shopping and paying for the goods, only to have the store manager come out and take everything, except for whatever he or she decides to leave me for a "nice dinner." To hell with that!!!

Salmon1
02-28-2007, 12:44 PM
That is a fairly common East Coast practice. However it seems that the Captain should make it clear beforehand. I have a friend that often fishes during this time of year in the Gulf of Mexico, out of Louisiana, for tuna and the way it works there is that you pay for your trip and all the fish are yours unless a "Giant" is taken and at that point the trip is over and the trip is FREE for the passengers(who keep whatever was caught up to that point) and the Captain races back to port where the Japanese buyers are waiting at the dock.

metalmouth
02-28-2007, 12:49 PM
Big Bluefin = Big $$$$$$$$$$$ :'(

Toxic_Waste
02-28-2007, 12:55 PM
Well, how sweet is that? So, if I am a captain, I can get somebody to pay me to take them fishing, I can get them to huff and puff for 2 hours cranking in a monster tuna for me, and then I can get somebody to pay me huge bucks for the fish!

Everything revolves around money, I guess................

bluestar
02-28-2007, 01:21 PM
So what was the outcome on the court case?

The judge verified that there is indeed such a custom, but said there is a failure of the meeting of the minds (Lawyer Harvey Levin also commented that the custom only applies between captains but not between a captain and customer); the captain should have put the rule in writing and presented to his customers ahead of time. So she divided the proceeds in half and award each half the proceed.

Yes the fish did got shipped to Japan.

PS I hate all other court shows but love watching People's Court. People's Court is the only court show that is more of a court than a show. Learned a lot from it.

gmdcdvm
02-28-2007, 01:25 PM
I want to know what the actual legal status of this is, and not just what is the "custom". I mean its customay to tip 15-20%, but that doesn't legally mean you have to. If there is nothing written down about the agreement or contract with the captain I wonder how they can get away with it. I always thought if its not in writing then it is not enforceable...
Interesting to see...
I agree with all of you. If I pay to fish that means I keep what I catch.

Now as for boat limits...I didn't read anything in the regs about a distinction between the crew and the passengers. I thought it was a limit for the whole boat (or as stated a limit for each licenesed angler which would inclued the crew). Are there a set of regs for guys who make a living with charter boats/party baots?
Gerry

Big_Easy
02-28-2007, 02:09 PM
WOW! Make you re-think this charter thing! :-/

Big_Easy
02-28-2007, 02:12 PM
I changed my mine! MY ass will you take my catch after I paid you for the trip to catch fish! Customary my ass! >:(

gmdcdvm
02-28-2007, 02:12 PM
Can you imagine heading out on a bay area salmon boat, landing a 50+lb salmon, and the captain turns around and tells you "sorry, thats our fish". There would be a mutiny, and a captain and crew swimming with the fishes if they tried to pull that off.

I know tuna are big money fish in the sushi markets, but still. I can't believe they get away with that.

Big_Easy
02-28-2007, 02:15 PM
OOOOOH I get it! Type the a$$ word and it turn to tushy! :P

I don't have a tushy :-/

metalmouth
02-28-2007, 02:32 PM
If I go out for Blue fin it won't be to share with the captain. I'll have him sign it. ;)

Farrier_Frank
02-28-2007, 02:40 PM
About a week ago I was having a beer with a friend and he told me this very same story and I told him he was full of it. Turns out I was wrong. I still can't believe it. [smiley=smiley_crazy.gif] And then about a month ago I read an article about the cost of tuna in Japan, saying they pay a couple hundred bucks a pound for sushi tuna. Man oh man! What a rip off! If I end up catching a ride for the tuna trip this summer and I catch a BIG tuna you can bet it's going home with me. [smiley=guns.gif]



OOOOOH I get it! *Type the a$$ word and it turn to tushy!

Welcome to the Disney aspect of the boards. Try some of the other "taboo" words and it will make you think before you screw up and call somebody a *****. [smiley=suesscat.gif]

kromebrite
02-28-2007, 02:46 PM
Remember when it used to change "cocktail" to "thingytail" ;D ;D

fishhogg
02-28-2007, 03:02 PM
ya unfortunatly boat limits and passenger limits are seperate, there is a fine line, single sentence that says it in the regs, ill see if i can find it for ya,

gmdcdvm
02-28-2007, 03:11 PM
I wonder if its illegal to sell sport caught fish back east like it is in CA? If not then maybe the passenger should get a share since he paid for his trip.

Farrier_Frank
02-28-2007, 03:16 PM
Remember when it used to change "cocktail" to "thingytail" ;D ;D


Yeah I remember that. On one of my first posts when I first joined the boards I was setting up a meeting with some of the guys for "cocktails" and I used the word several times in the post and when I posted it and reread it, now with all the "thingytails" replacing "cocktails", I was blown away. But, I guess if they don't have that security in place some of us would definitely be over the line. [smiley=homersimpson.gif]

dark_knight
02-28-2007, 03:22 PM
Sad thing is this happened to me when I was 14. My uncle from chicago decided to take me and my cousin fishing in the San Franciscio bay. So we got on a charter boat out of the wharf. Well i had caught my limit of stripers and the captain kept me fishing I prolly caught another 7 fish that day. Well the last fish I caught was a 25lb stripper the big fish of the boat that day. Well long story short I never got paid for the big fish on the boat pool (that I paid for) as well as had that fish taken by the captain. He wouldn't even switch me one of my fish for it. I think this took place because I was so young but I will never go out on this boat again.

NRJohn
02-28-2007, 03:38 PM
Large bft sell in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Sad thing is years ago when they used to catch huge fish on the east coast they didn't eat them. If lucky it was turned into cat food, otherwise off to the garbage dump. Now that is truely sickening.

In Hawaii I've seen signs on the boat that says the fish belongs to the boat.

ZACK
02-28-2007, 03:57 PM
I got my O ring stretched in Maui by a boat called the Finest Kind of all things. I caught this little Mahi Mahi, and this other chick caught on big enough to eat mine along with this Wahoo. At the end of the day while we were getting off of the boat they gave us this "That's how we survive off of fish tips, and fish sales". I told him "Are you kiddin me, I though you survived off of the $180 I gave you along with the 5 others on board for a day of fishing"? They wouldn't even let me take the little one I caught and keep the rest. I complained to the Conseare sp of the hotel and she spoke to the harbor master who said the boat is supposed to share the fish and if I came down tomorrow he would have some fish for me. I told her thanks but no thanks. I was staying on the other side of the Island and didn't feel like driving 30 minutes for some steaks that were probably pissed on before I got em. First time in my life I felt like I had been prostituted! >:(

It's a JACK move period. ZACK!

http://img157.imageshack.us/img157/5065/mauizackfishwe8.jpg (http://imageshack.us)


http://img95.imageshack.us/img95/4138/mauifishonqo0.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/1188/mauifishingjg6.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/7587/mauifishiw7.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

spinfisher
02-28-2007, 05:22 PM
I was shocked when I first learned that this is (maybe 'was' - been a while) the custom (and, yeah, "custom" means "rule") in charters off the Carolinas - all the fish belong to the boat. I guess the philosophy is, you pay for the fun, but the captain is working for the meat. It would encourage him/her to put you on lots of fish tho' * :-/

I just wouldn't go on a boat with that system. I fish with frying pans, wine sauces and the like dancing in my head - couldn't handle pulling in the captain's fish.

If it were a fish I wouldn't keep for myself, I'd rather release it.

Bait_N_Wait
02-28-2007, 06:04 PM
I fish Rhode Island once a year. *In researching charters, the websites often say that Bluefin over a certain weight (maybe 100 pounds?) are property of the boat pursuant to federal law. *Some sites say the captain splits the profits from selling the fish with the person who caught it. *Others just say captain keeps the fish.

I fish for stripers back there, and the charter I go on: (a) kicks butt; and (b) let's you keep two fish each. :) *We catch monsters! *Two years ago we did try briefly for some boiling bluefin, but they were more interested in the bait ball they were chasing.

Here are a couple pics of fish from Rhode Island:

http://img136.imageshack.us/img136/2848/weekapaug2005edandnickvn1.th.jpg (http://img136.imageshack.us/my.php?image=weekapaug2005edandnickvn1.jpg)

http://img99.imageshack.us/img99/1912/weekapaug2005fishboxjj6.th.jpg (http://img99.imageshack.us/my.php?image=weekapaug2005fishboxjj6.jpg)

triggerfish
02-28-2007, 06:46 PM
If you would like to see a grown man cry,just before that bluefin comes to the gaff,cut that line! ;D

bluestar
02-28-2007, 07:09 PM
Is bluefin tuna the type whose meat is bright red?

http://www.invisible-jet.net/nosh/archives/images/tunasash.jpg

SOUTH_BAY_FISHER
03-01-2007, 09:15 AM
It was a few years back and i charter fished in Hawaii for Mahi mahi we killed them something like 16 mahi and a few yellow fin tuna (small). the captan cut us of about half a felte for dinner and said good day. I was pissed 4 people ad all we got was a day of 20-25 foot swells my brother pukeing his brains out and about 3 pound of fish. What the heck. We paid $700 to get tossed around all day and have a little pice of fish. I will always clarify that what i catch is what i take home other wise i don't fish your boat.

fishhogg
03-01-2007, 12:10 PM
Anyone heard of ANARCHY, captains make great bait! ;D

sethonious
03-01-2007, 12:32 PM
On a boat though it would be mutiny, not anarchy.

I don't have a lot of sympathy for you folks here. Terms are usually stated up front. Read a contract when you sign it, and make arangements if you want to keep fish. Most captians will agree to a fee that will allow you to keep all fish caught, but remember it is fishing and not chatching. You might wind up skunked.

Charters make you a guest on the captains boat and it is ALWAYS captain's rules. Don't like it, be a captain and make your own rules.

Imbigdave
03-01-2007, 12:37 PM
On a boat though it would be mutiny, not anarchy. *

I don't have a lot of sympathy for you folks here. *Terms are usually stated up front. *Read a contract when you sign it, and make arangements if you want to keep fish. *Most captians will agree to a fee that will allow you to keep all fish caught, but remember it is fishing and not chatching. You might wind up skunked.

Charters make you a guest on the captains boat and it is ALWAYS captain's rules. *Don't like it, be a captain and make your own rules. *


Finaly a voice of reason.

Bigdave

kromebrite
03-01-2007, 12:51 PM
If the terms are outlined prior to departure then I absolutely agree with you. The captains I have gone with in Hawaii have been very clear about this and I've accepted the terms(primarily because it would have been hard to find a boat that did not practice this and I'm not that invested in paying an additional fee).
The practice that is being compained about is when there is no mention of such prior to fishing and it is only after fish are caught that the poilicy is outlined to the dismay of the client. One could say "buyer beware" and that anyone who does not ask has it coming, but given that most people have an expectation that the captain is paid to provide the gear, bait, boat and expertise to *put you on some fish and maybe even catch one then it does not seem so unreasonable to be miffed. I think that it is the failure to disclaim that riles folks.
Just my .02, doesn't mean it's law ;) ;D

bluestar
03-01-2007, 01:07 PM
If the terms are outlined prior to departure then I absolutely agree with you. The captains I have gone with in Hawaii have been very clear about this and I've accepted the terms(primarily because it would have been hard to find a boat that did not practice this and I'm not that invested in paying an additional fee).
The practice that is being compained about is when there is no mention of such prior to fishing and it is only after fish are caught that the poilicy is outlined to the dismay of the client. One could say "buyer beware" and that anyone who does not ask has it coming, but given that most people have an expectation that the captain is paid to provide the gear, bait, boat and expertise to *put you on some fish and maybe even catch one then it does not seem so unreasonable to be miffed. I think that it is the failure to disclaim that riles folks.
Just my .02, doesn't mean it's law ;) ;D


You are correct; in the People's Court case the terms are not stated up front; so the customers are completely unware of this rule. The captain testified that "everyone knows this rule," but that's clearly an overstatement as demonstrated by this discussion.

The captain did not have any contract to be signed either, and in fact when interviewed after the proceeding, the captain said he still will not present contracts to customers in advance. It really gives the appearance that captain intentionally keeps his customers in the dark about the rules, fearing that will turn some customers away.

justme
03-01-2007, 01:24 PM
I went to Maui in December 06 and went on a charter boat fishing. I paid $180 for a boat ride. We never even got to touch the fishing pol. Once we got out of the harber a little ways the deck hand put out all of the lines with lures and said this is your pole if it gets a fish on sit in the chair and I will give you the pole. We trolled for 5 1/2 hours with out one single hit. We never stopped to try bait fishing , they never tried any different lures nothing. Everybody on the boat was pissed. The deck hand or captain did not seem to care whether we caught fish or not. He had his money. :-/ :-/ :-/ :-/ :'( :'(

slick88
03-01-2007, 04:59 PM
In 2003, I went fishing on a charter boat in Kauai, Hawaii and there were no contracts indicating that the boat keeps all fish caught. There is a sign inside the boat stating this, but you don't know about until after you've paid.

Although I didn't catch anything, at least I was given some mahi mahi filets that was caught the day before.

abdiver12
03-01-2007, 10:57 PM
So what was the outcome on the court case?

The judge verified that there is indeed such a custom, but said there is a failure of the meeting of the minds (Lawyer Harvey Levin also commented that the custom only applies between captains but not between a captain and customer); the captain should have put the rule in writing and presented to his customers ahead of time. *So she divided *the proceeds in half and award each half the proceed.

Yes the fish did got shipped to Japan.



Isn't there a law against selling recreationally caught fish? I mean, if I were allowed to sell all the salmon and abalone I caught recreationally to the Japanese, I would be able to quit my day job! Are the laws different on the East coast?

abdiver12
03-01-2007, 11:05 PM
I went to Maui in December 06 and went on a charter boat fishing. I paid $180 for a boat ride. We never even got to touch the fishing pol. Once we got out of the harber a little ways the deck hand put out all of the lines with lures and said this is your pole if it gets a fish on sit in the chair and I will give you the pole. We trolled for 5 1/2 hours with out one single hit. We never stopped to try bait fishing , they never tried any different lures nothing. Everybody on the boat was pissed. The deck hand or captain did not seem to care whether we caught fish or not. He had his money. :-/ :-/ :-/ :-/ :'( :'(

Don't waste your money fishing in Hawaii guys, the place is fished out. *I lived there for 5 months and went to Honokohau Harbor almost everyday to see the catch. *Marlin were few and far between and those that were caught were only in the 100-150 pound range. *Some captains with less pimped out boats will guarantee that you can keep the fish to attract more business but its still a waste of money. *I'd recommend going to Costa Rica or Panama for sailfishing. *So much fish (all billfish required to be released by law in CR) that you're arms will be tired plus plenty of Pargo and Amberjack to boot. *

bluestar
03-02-2007, 07:29 AM
So what was the outcome on the court case?

The judge verified that there is indeed such a custom, but said there is a failure of the meeting of the minds (Lawyer Harvey Levin also commented that the custom only applies between captains but not between a captain and customer); the captain should have put the rule in writing and presented to his customers ahead of time. *So she divided *the proceeds in half and award each half the proceed.

Yes the fish did got shipped to Japan.



Isn't there a law against selling recreationally caught fish? *I mean, if I were allowed to sell all the salmon and abalone I caught recreationally to the Japanese, I would be able to quit my day job! *Are the laws different on the East coast?


The fish was sold not by the fishing party but by the CAPTAIN, after taking possession of the fish. The no-sale rule was indeed a point raised by the captain to suggest fish has to go to the captain in order to be sold; he asked "how are [the customers] going to get the 700 lb fish home?"

But his point was easily refuted; the plantiffs said they would've fillet it, cut it up, and divide among the 6 people.

ocean_314
03-02-2007, 08:27 AM
This is unreal. If you pay for a charter and there is nothing in writing about the boat keeping the fish then its a big bluff.
Personally if i cought a 700lb tuna that is worth big $$$$ i would call the cops an demand that the captian be arrested for attempted theft and if the cop refused i would take them all to federal court. contract law is very specific, the captian and the cops would lose big time plus damages.
Come on if you are doing the catching and paying for the chater then its your fish, or you are paying to work for the captian.
Oh and peoples court is a joke when it comes to the law. this is TV not reality

cptdarel
03-02-2007, 03:11 PM
While fishing in Baja Loreto BCS, we landed about 6 Dorado, as we landed at the beach, the captian happened to pull up in front of a gated house, 3 Federales met us there and ASKED which fish is theirs, HEA HEA we responded take your pick. You betcha

ocean_314
03-02-2007, 03:22 PM
Talked to a friend of mine who went fishing in hawaii. He said that he had to sign a contract with the charter boat saying that the boat got to keep the fish.
He also said that Hawii was fished out and its luck if you catch anything.

somebody
03-02-2007, 04:35 PM
i think if i caught a 15000.00 dollar fish and i had to give it up i would cut my line at the rail and then let him cry

Toxic_Waste
03-02-2007, 05:47 PM
Backtracking a little, I agree with the comment by kromebrite, about how the discontent was focused on the situations in which the paying customers were not informed beforehand of the custom. I have no problem with the practice of the boat (captain) keeping all the catch or even part of it, as long as people enter into the deal well informed. Personally, I do not relish the concept of paying to work for somebody.

If captains have certain lawful rights, that's fine. For all I care, they can order clients to dance around on deck in their great-grandmother's panties while they smear peanut butter all over themselves...each to his own!

Haha -- I was just about to agree with "somebody" ... about cutting the line, but then I got to thinking it could be costly to do that! What if the captain sued you for intentionally depriving him of income? You might end up having to compensate him the $1500 or whatever amount would be estimated. I guess you could always pretend it just broke by accident!

I wonder what the legalities of that are.....about letting fish you catch go? Shoot - I was throwing mackerels back left and right and so were a lot of people last time I went out. Nobody seemed to mind. (Of course they aren't very valuable commercially as far as I know. Not like a tuna, anyway.)

abdiver12
03-02-2007, 06:58 PM
The fish was sold not by the fishing party but by the CAPTAIN, after taking possession of the fish. *The no-sale rule was indeed a point raised by the captain to suggest fish has to go to the captain in order to be sold; he asked "how are [the customers] going to get the 700 lb fish home?" *

But his point was easily refuted; the plantiffs said they would've fillet it, cut it up, and divide among the 6 people.

So what you're saying is, if you are a charter boat captain on the East coast, you are allowed to sell your catch, much like in Hawaii. *I'm not a charter captain but I'm fairly certain that's not permitted in CA or in Alaska. *In San Diego, when the long range boats return from Mexico, the yellowfin tuna you catch (some in excess of 300 lbs) can only be exchanged for canned tuna, not sold. *Not a bad business for the East coast guys though! *You get paid by customers to take them fishing, and when they land a $150K fish, you get to sell it. *One fish/customer, therefore, can pay your bills for the entire year! *

gmdcdvm
03-02-2007, 07:31 PM
Thats why I love this message board. I never in a million years would have thought about asking if I could keep the fish I caught. I would just assume I could because I paid to go fishing not to work on someones boat. Now I know to make certain I ask before I book any trips, especially on the east coast. Funny how no one puts that on their advertisements: Captain gets to keep...

In the immortal words of G.I. Joe "Now I know, and knowing is half the battle". Yes, I did watch to much T.V. growing up :D.
Gerry

metalmouth
03-03-2007, 08:31 AM
Wow, this thread has turned out to be hugely informative. I think I'll sticky a link in the FAQ Board!

MM

Toxic_Waste
03-03-2007, 09:15 AM
Yes, I also think this has been very eye-opening. I was previously unaware that the fish-keeping practice even existed, and wouldn't have thought to inquire prior to booking a trip. Sometimes a person just doesn't know enough to even ask the "right" questions. It's a very interesting thread. Thank you, bluestar!

vito
03-03-2007, 10:05 AM
Sethonius. I disagree with you. This "captain's rules" mentality is unacceptable. They are providing a service. I am paying for entertainment, just like going to the movies or out to dinner. I expect to be satisfied when I leave. So if I go out to dinner I am a "guest" in the owner's restaurant? They can treat me poorly and that should be ok? If I don't like it I should go out and buy my own restaurant? This mentality would end up with the restaurant going out of business. If I pay for a charter I expect a certain level of customer satisfaction. The fact that I don't "own" the boat is irrelevant.

Yes a customer should be made aware of any rule or stipulations that may affect a person's level of satisfaction - such as the boat keeping your fish. This conversation should take place before money changes hands. It also should be posted in plain sight for any person to see. But to say that a person could pay for a charter - leave the boat totally angry and unhappy, and that should be ok because it is the captain's rules - well that dog don't hunt.

fishhook60
03-03-2007, 02:01 PM
i saw thatles court the plantiff got a very small amount of money from the sale of the fish i wouldnt like that either. next time i go on a party boay ill ask who keeps the big ones lol also saw where they sell those big tuna in japan for close to 10 grand

KoneZone
03-03-2007, 09:09 PM
I was talking to a lady at a Boat and Tackle show in Virginia Beach a few years back. She was looking at my gear and asked how big a fish it would handle. I stated that it was recorded at 150 # Halibut. She said she had caught a Huge Tuna off the East Coast at over 800 pounds. I said that must have been great and she said the Captain kept it in a matter of fact attitude. She even knew that he got thousands of dollars off of the sale of her fish. I was overwhelmed and somewhat speech less. :'( She assured me that I was wrong and that they practiced this type of thing all the time. The Captain was commercial fishing and she was a guest. What a flipping dumb deal was about all I could say. She just went on about her way and thought all was great. Hey does that mean if we are hiking and you find a ;D55 pound Gold Nugget ;D and I get it because you are my hiking guest? I will always get the skinny from the Captain prior to booking any and all trips from now on.

fishhook60
03-04-2007, 09:44 AM
would be kind of nice to have customers to pay for your commercial fishin and way of living huh heck i thought thats why people pay a charter to catch fish and big fish>

NRJohn
03-04-2007, 12:27 PM
If this custom is so such a great idea why don't they use it down it Mexico? The skippers/pangeros' down there could certainly use the money. Same with the West Coast? I've never heard of a 6 pack charter pulling a surprise like this after a charter. Wonder how well that would go over after a nice day of wsb or yt fishing.

Here's another analogy; You pay a guide to take you out on an elk hunt. You shoot a nice bull. After it's shot the guide then informs you that the elk is his and he has the right to do as he pleases with it. Maybe he's got a small plaque on his dash in the cab of his truck that you didn't see as it was still dark when you got out. Does that still make it right? Would you have even been aware that such a practice existed? How is that any different than the aforementioned example? Just because some people know about the practice of a charter keeping the catch doesn't mean everyone else does. You should never assume anything.

I don't have a lot of experience chartering (only overseas) but how often is a contract actually signed? Many times people book through a hotel especially at resort locations like Ha. so they probably wouldn't have a clue as to the fleets practices/traditions.

sethonious
03-05-2007, 08:33 AM
You can complain or you can fish, it's your choice. If I got a pic with an 800 lb tuna then that's great. I could never eat all of it, and let's face it captains struggle. If this is a rule to make them an extra 10 grand the 1 or 2 times in a lifetime then so be it.

Vito- a boat is not a restaurant. You said it yourself, you are paying for entertainment. Go to a fish market if you want to pay for meat. Captains are kings of their vessels, don't tip em if you were unsatisfied.

NRJ- the plaque would serve as informed consent, imho.

To answer everyone's questions in advance. Yes I have had fish taken, got some good pics, didn't really care at the end of the day because I had fun.

Bobsoutdoors
03-05-2007, 10:59 AM
I had heard of this, but found it hard to believe also.

On the Great Lakes I am pretty sure the fish legally belong to the angler. I know I have never heard of this happening here. Then again, it is also illegal to sell gamefish, so there is no market.

Guys like that just give chartering a bad name. Custom or not, it's obviously not widely understood and causing a lot of "rippoff stories" that the industry does not need.

Mostly this is just communication, a lack of it anyway.

I just checked 5 websites for Rhode Island Fishing Charters and only one (Sea Hawk Charters) mentioned it at all: "All the fish belong to the party- except for giant tuna (over 310 lbs), you get a percentage (20% ~ after expenses) of the fish if it is sold up to the price of the fishing trip".

THAT'S the way it should be done, communicated up front and shared with the customer.

NRJohn
03-05-2007, 02:41 PM
Sethonious, those fish don't sell for 10 grand or so. They typically sell in the six figure range.

So you'd be ok with having your elk taken away from you then. To each his own.

vito
03-05-2007, 03:40 PM
Sethonius, the mentallity you are referring really is bad business. If I pay $800 for a charter on a cruiser and I catch a $25,000 fish and have to give it away, I am out $24,200. Wether or not I keep my $120 tip because I am unhappy would hardly be important to me at that point. If you are ok with the practice - great. I am not.

I wonder how you would feel if you paid to go see a movie and when the door slammed behind you you were told that all of the food and beverages you bought had to go to the "owner"???


I'll say it now. I fish for entertainment AND meat. No one is going to take my catch away from me no matter who "owns" the boat. I will make sure to research this practice before every charter I take. The boats that have this policy will never, ever get my business. If I do so happen to book a charter on which this is a practice - and they didn't make me aware of it before I booked - they will have to pry that fish from my COLD DEAD HANDS!!! >:(

The_Reel_Won
03-05-2007, 06:25 PM
Unbelievable! I would never, ever, charter a boat if I lived there or ever visit there. Thanks for the heads up. Now I know what not to do on the east coast or Hawaii. ;)

TSL
03-06-2007, 05:37 PM
Hmmmmmm,
interesting

TSL

bluestar
03-07-2007, 01:46 PM
Folks in the charter boat business understandably like this practice; paying customers obviously hate it. I don't think the debate is gonna change anyone's mind.

As for the customer who is so considerate of boat captain's struggle and not your own, what can I say except you are simply the greatest human beings! ;)

But one important thing seems to have escaped our attention: Does this practice exist on west coast or more specifically SF bay area? Does the fact that no one has mentioned it means it does not exist on the west coast?

I sure hope to find out because from time to time I still get on party boats or charter boats out of HMB for tuna trips....

vito
03-07-2007, 02:15 PM
Ok Ok Ok Please take this as an honest question. I am not trying to antogonize anyone. Also, don't get me wrong I am not anti - charter boat owners. As a matter of fact I have been on more than a few charters and do consider myself a heavy tipper. I really do not understand these posts though. Are charter boat captains a charity case? Isn't it everyones' choice what they do for a living? Yes I understand that the industry is over-regulated and it is hard to make a buck. But just like the logging industry - If the writing is on the wall, and public opinion/legislation/spotted owls/(insert industry breaking phenomenon here), dictate that it is no longer possible to make a decent living, should not a reasonable adult make the choice to continue with that form of work, or not. If a person chooses to charter their boat and subject themselves to the regulations, fees, scrutiny, competition, inflation, deprevation of fishing populations, etc... that is their decision. If they are not successful - that is called capitalism. If they are - that is capitalism. I can think of quite a few charter companies that are successful and make a good living for themselves and their employees. Its all about supply and demand. Simple enough. Their rates should reflect a reasonable market demand and resonable compensation for the service that they are providing. If I pay them to take me on a charter and then give them my catch - how does that make me a great person?? They are still getting paid a fair wage - that they impose I might add. I truely do not understand this line of thought.

The_Reel_Won
03-07-2007, 05:54 PM
I'm west coast San Francisco bay area. And I have never ever heard of this. Thus the "Unbeleivable" *opening on my last post. *Our charters are Big Sturgeon in the bay and deltas and Albacore Salmon, and bottom fishing.. Humbolt Squid. Granted I haven't been on a charter boat since the 80's but I don't think anything has changed. I'm sure other SF bay area members will chime in. Also I don't think you can sell your sport caught fish in California. *Every once in a while we catch blue fin (20 to 130 lb) range when fishing for Albies. *(5 to 35 lb range). * Some how I just can't see the capt telling any one around here that he's taking his Blue fin. *loL. *;D

justme
03-08-2007, 07:19 AM
I live is the Bay Area in California and go on charter boats all the time. (Solmon, rockcod, striper, halibut, sturguon etc.) You keep all of your catch, they even fillet it for you (for a slight fee). When I went fishing in Hawaii I did not here about the captain keeping the fish until after we got on the boat and someone mentioned it. That was the first time I have ever heard of this practice. I will never go fishing again in Hawaii. Everyone else on the boat felt the same way. I guess if they keep this up they won't have much of a clientel left will they. If this occurred in the Bay area I think the boat would get highjacked.

AllFishNoWork
03-08-2007, 07:59 AM
It is what it is. Do your homework first, If you don't like it, don't go. As for No Cal, I've been on 2 boats out of Ft Bragg for rock fish and had great trips, The Captains and crew were outstanding, one crew even gave my wife a gift and the other boat posted her pic in their office.

baldeagle
03-09-2007, 06:16 PM
WOW that is learning the hard way for sure . :'(

redeyejedi
08-08-2007, 12:30 PM
los angeles here : i am not sure what the industry standard is over here but heads you wouldn't want to piss off on some charters/ party boats i went on long ago. not much was caught so it wasn't an issue. but...... i have to agree with both sides of this arguemt. the practice of cap'ts keep cathc is ridiculously wak. if it stated somehwere the customer can be informed, than it all on you for not 'reading between the lines'. see, if you try to get over on ME with a shadiness of undisclosed practices and customs......i'll sink your boat! come legit, inform and respect those putting food on YOUR table so they can do the same.
just my .02 .
btw.....everyone deserves to get paid, laid, but not played

exocet
08-08-2007, 03:58 PM
In Japan, bluefin tuna can sell for up to $110 a pound, making a 1,400-pounder -- one of the real biggies -- worth about $150,000!

MinnowMagnet
08-08-2007, 05:10 PM
That's Wrong!

BigSharkCatching
08-10-2007, 12:18 AM
I catch a 1,000lb tuna, the capt's walking the plank...I mean having a terrible accident, going overboard in the process. Hehe.

Oh yeah, and the price of BlueFin just doubled!

Empire
08-10-2007, 07:02 AM
I am another one that has never heard of this practice. I don't get out much to the ocean so it likely will not effect me, but I would be quite irate if anyone (Captain or deckhand or another fisherman) tried to take my fish.

Yaker
08-10-2007, 05:51 PM
Bad enough a captain would ask, but to forcibly take your catch?!?! I would be pissed of beyond words if that happened.

realdeal
08-11-2007, 01:56 AM
If the captain notifies me before that theres a chance he could take my catch, then I find a different charter. And if he doesnt, then hes gonna have to wrestle me for it :P

somebody_ewe
08-11-2007, 08:38 AM
now a big tuna is worth 15-20,000.00 bucks. next customary tip 15-20 %. bull butter tip means to insure promptness and that is for restuarants. next look in the Bible and GOD only asks for 10%. this is somebody on her computer

somebody_ewe
08-11-2007, 09:01 AM
this somebody again-- now that everyone here knows of this practice my thoughts are--I have to have a license to catch the fish therefore as long as it is on my line it is mine. I would then ask if the capt. would like to buy it. if we could not arrive at a price I would cut my line. a buddy i had before he passed away had a guy tag a deer he had shot. my first reaction would have been to shoot the guy but my buddy was smarter than i am. he was very polite and even checked the guys tag to make sure he had it properly filled out and could not be used again. the guy didnt even have a weapon , just the deer tag. my buddy then proceeded to empty his rifle into the hams and shoulders and the emptyied his pistol into the backstrap and hams and told the guy theres your deer and i will go get another one. true story