Freshwater fishing is when a fisherman fishes in a body of water that has less than 0.05% salinity. You can find freshwater in ponds, lakes, streams, rivers and they can be both man-made and naturally occurring. Freshwater fishing is different than saltwater fishing because the species of fish are entirely different.
However, there are some fish that can transition from salt water to freshwater. Salmon is a perfect example of a game fish that can do this. They are born in freshwater, then spend a few years at sea and return to spawn in the same freshwater body of water they were born in.
Freshwater Fishing Tips, Tricks and Tactics
- Use the Map
When fishing in a freshwater lake or pond you’ll want to get a topographical map of that body of water. This will let you know what and where the different depths of the lake or pond are. Along with that it may also show you locations of sunken man-made fish cribs.
- Use a Slip Bobber
Using a slip bobber is a common and easy to use setup when fishing in freshwater. A slip bobber is basically a bobber with a hollow hole going through it. This allows you to tie a knot and a stopper above the bobber. The knot allows you to decide where on your line the bobber stops, thus allowing you set any depth you want without have to sacrifice casting quality.
- The Best Bait to Use
The best types of live bait to use in freshwater are worms, minnows, wax worms and soft shell (crayfish). Ultimately you’ll want to use whatever live bait is best for the species of fish you’re trying to catch. Some other types of live bait that are also used are leeches, frogs and other odd ball type bait.
- Wash Your Hand
When fishing in water with little salinity you’ll really want to make sure you keep your hands clean. Fish have a good sense of smell and any foreign scent on your bait or lures can turn them off.
- Temperature is Important
The majority of freshwater fish species have specific water temperature and weather that they prefer. You’ll want to research the specific fish you’re trying to catch to figure out the best times and water depths to catch them.
- Safety Information for Freshwater Fisherman
Fishing is a great hobby but like many hobbies you need to follow specific precautions to keep yourself safe. We recommend that you crush the barbs on hooks, this will make removing a hook from skin much easier and unlike what people might say it won’t affect the ability to reel in a fish. You always need to have the proper fishing license and/or stamps, if you’re caught fishing without them you could get stuck with a steep fine. If you plan on wading in a pond, river or lake make sure to use a wader belt to prevent water from rushing into your waders if you stumble. Always use life jackets when fishing on a boat and don’t forget the sunscreen since water can magnify the effect of the sun.