We caught a good mess of cats before the water started to rise and they cut off. When we got back to his house at about 3 am we took the remaining fish out of the live well and put them in the cooler. We counted ten good cats(not including the 15 or so we threw back because they were smaller then what we wanted. We made plans to clean them the next day but work schedules messed that up and i had to clean them myself. e
Now fast-forward one week.
Yesterday I was cutting grass and every-time I passed the boat i got a whiff of something rotten. After about the third pass i decided to inspect it. I looked all through the boat and could find nothing to cause the smell. I washed the boat out and still smelled it. Finally i decided to look in the live well. What I found was revolting. Apparently we had missed a small cat in the live well. It was a stew of putridity and maggots.
Luckily i could see the drain plug and used to gaff to pull it. Then began the cleaning out process. I rinsed all i could out through the drain hole. I then poured about 2 boxes of baking soda in it to try to kill the smell. No dice. Then tried half a gallon of vinegar. Still no dice. So at 10 pm i had to go to the store for a couple gallons of bleach. I poured 1/4th of the bottle in there last night and while it helped some it did not completely kill it. But it did kill it enough that i could stand to get in there with some cardboard and scoop out most of the remaining material. I then rinsed it out again, put the plug back in and poured half of the remaining bleach in the live well. As I type I am waiting to see if this works. If not i don't know what to do. But it should.
Sometimes the lessons we learn are not the ones we thought we needed. I am open to suggestions(just don't tell me not to leave fish in the live well. I already figured that one out) in the comments section.