The freshwater and saltwater fishing opportunities are endless in Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Anglers catch a vast range of species between the coastal waters, Atlantic Ocean, lakes, rivers, creeks, reservoirs, and ponds. Keeping freshly caught fish ice cold is essential to preserve freshness and maximize taste. Fish boxes are an intricate part of fishing boats. The purpose of the box is to hold fish. Here is what to know about a boat fish box. 

What Is A Fish Box

A fish box is an insulated compartment aboard center console or fishing boat. One or more lockers are standard on fishing vessels. To seal the hatch closed turn the latch positioned at the top.

Insulation lines the exterior of fish boxes. Two to three inches of insulation surround the fiberglass box. 

Ice or chiller plates keep fish boxes cold. Fish storage box must remain cold to serve its intended purpose of preserving fish. 

What Is A Chiller Plate Work

Boxes that contain chiller plates require less preparation because anglers are not required to purchase and lug ice aboard the boat. The chiller plate cools the fish storage locker rather than ice cubes. 

A chiller plate is similar to an onboard air condition system. Raw sea or freshwater is sucked into the condenser and draws heat away from the tubing holding refrigerant. After the water passes by the coils, it is expelled over the side through a discharge port. The process continues until the thermostat clicks the system off when chilled to the proper temperature. Chiller plates are on sportfishing and commercial fishing vessels. Check out Frost Box chiller plates. 

While the condenser chiller plates are the most effective and cool large spaces, battery-wired options are available. Consider a 12-volt chiller plate installation for small vessels as it requires minimal space. Either ice or chillers are effective.

What Are Fish Boxes Made Of

The purpose of a fish box is to prevent warm air from entering. Insulation prevents warm air from reaching the locker. Fish remain ice cold within the box.

The location of fish boxes is beneath the deck or seating. Hatches access fish lockers and include thick seals to prevent warm air from entering the space. Hatches are expansive allowing for easy placement of fish. 

Thick insulation surrounds fish boxes for a specific purpose. Insulation surrounds the base and sides of the box. The purpose of the insulation is to prevent warm air from reaching the shell. Warm air causes ice to melt and chiller plates from performing poorly. 

The intention is to keep the internal space cold despite the intrusion of warm air from both the bottom and top hatch. 

What Size Is A Fish Box

Fish lockers vary in size. The size of the box is highly dependent on the vessel’s length. We have been onboard boats that incorporate minimal and expansive locker spaces. 

Lockers exceed five feet in length and three feet in width on sportfishing vessels Contrary to sportfish vessels, center consoles are more limited in deck space. Like sportfishing boats, center consoles are equipped with fish lockers. 

Needless to say, the size of the box varies based on the vessel. The size of the fish locker required is highly dependent on the type of fish you are targeting. 

When venturing to offshore waters through Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina, anglers utilize large fish lockers capable of holding pelagics, including wahoo otherwise known as ono, tuna, dolphin fish, cobia, and more.

Inshore and freshwater anglers most frequently chase fish smaller in size. When targeting small fish, fish boxes do not require lengthy lockers. Here are the varieties of fish anglers catch and keep in fresh and saltwater.

Inshore Saltwater Fishing

Anglers catch and keep redfish, sea trout, flounder, and other varieties of fish while inshore fishing the coastal waters of Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. 

Offshore Shore Saltwater Reef Fishing

Reef and wreck fishing anglers offshore target snapper, grouper, sheepshead, and other fish are stowed in small fish lockers to be kept cold until returning to the dock

Freshwater Fishing

Freshwater anglers in Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina catch and keep striped bass, walleye, crappie, catfish, and more. 

Now You Know The Functionality Of A Fish Box

While a cooler is equally effective, coolers take up limited deck space compared to fish lockers positioned in the deck or beneath seats. Remember to clean the compartment after use to avoid a strong smell from developing. Whether you use ice or a chiller plate, maintain cold temperatures to maximize freshness.