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Percussive stunning or killing

241. Percussive stunning by a blow to the back of the head with a small club called a priest (followed by exsanguination if desired) is highly effective in producing insensibility when properly applied. However, the strength of the blow must be sufficient for the fish not to recover (a percussive kill) or must be immediately followed by exsanguination to ensure that the fish do not recover consciousness before death. The efficiency of the percussive stun or kill could be reduced if large numbers of fish were being handled and it is therefore important that those undertaking the operation are adequately trained in its technique and are rested before they become tired and inefficient. Inefficiency also leads to excessive bruising. Larger fish are more difficult to handle and particular care should be taken when they are to be stunned or killed by manual percussion.