Big Fish Statistics

• By Jason Hansen • Empirical Analysis

Often when we are analyzing our fishing results, we are looking for patterns or conditions that correlate with overall fishing success. That success is defined by the total number of fish we catch and the rate that we're able to catch them. Fish Swami's Fishing Log Empirical Analysis System (FLEAS) allows anglers to search for patterns and correlations in their fishing logs, giving them results in the form of total number of fish caught and average fish size (among other things).

A Fish Swami user recently emailed the site, mentioning that while it's useful to be able to use FLEAS against all sizes of caught fish, it would be nice to be able to filter the results against big fish. With that ability, you might find that larger fish eat different flies or lures than smaller fish, are caught more predominantly at certain times of day, and more.

New Parameter - Minimum Fish Size

To that end, I recently added the ability to specify a minimum fish size to your FLEAS queries. This will filter your results to only include fish that were equal to or greater than the fish size you specify. For example, let's say you went fishing and saved the following fishing log catch info:

Rainbow Trout
Num Caught Avg Size Pattern
115"#10 Black Woolly Bugger
210"#16 Olive Zebra Midge

In you run a FLEAS query and specify a minimum fish size of 13", only the first fish entry will be returned in the results (the 15" fish).

Log Big Fish Separately

One caveat of using this new FLEAS functionality is that big fish need to be entered separately in fishing log entries. To illustrate why, let's look at a sample fishing trip and its associated log entry.

Fishing Trip

Caught 5 rainbow trout, all on a woolly bugger, at sizes 10", 10", 10", 15", 20".

One way to specify the caught fish in the fishing log could be:

Rainbow Trout
Num Caught Avg Size Pattern
513"#10 Black Woolly Bugger

After saving that fishing log, if we were to query FLEAS and ask for the number of fish caught that were greater than 14", we would get 0 fish caught. That's because Fish Swami thinks we caught 5 fish, all at 13" in length.

A second way to specify the caught fish is:

Rainbow Trout
Num Caught Avg Size Pattern
120"#10 Black Woolly Bugger
115"#10 Black Woolly Bugger
310"#10 Black Woolly Bugger

By specifying more detail in the fishing log, FLEAS is now able to return an accurate fish count when queried for the number of fish caught that were greater than 14" (2 fish).

It's obviously more work to separately specify each of the fish caught, so I'd recommend trying to come to a happy medium. Use whatever size you consider as a "big" fish as the threshold for independently entering in fish entries, and group together the fish caught on the same pattern when they're smaller than your threshold.

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Comments

Dave Maas

Just learned you put in this feature. Cool!

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