Need basic fishing instructions. : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Since many of who have never fished in our lives may have to do so for the sake of survival in just a few months, could we have some lessons on the basics. I realize there are as many techniques and opinions as there are varieties of fish, but I'm interested to know what type of equipment to have on hand and the easiest methods for catching the fish.

I will supplement this information with a trip to the library, but for the sake of time, would anyone be willing to share their expertise? Gratefully, Mary.

-- Mary (, April 17, 1999


Material required:

1 - stick dynamite

1 - Book matches

1 - roll primacord (fuse)

Instructions: Cut fuse to length of 18". Insert in dynamite. Light fuse, throw stick in water. After the boom, gather up the fish.

-- fisherman (blastaway@bay.gen), April 17, 1999.

Well I'm sure you're going to get lots of answers so I'll get in fast with what little I know. :-)

Talk to the people at the sporting goods store about the tackle you need for your area and types of fish available. Tell them its for your (g)kids to get them started. Basic stuff like dynamite, spears or even rifles or bow and arrows. The more effective stuff, you know. :-)

Otherwise, you may need some hooks, sinkers, bobbers and a supply of imitation bait. Or you can dig for worms or other live bait when you need to. Y2k wise, don't worry about a full set of rods, reels, etc. Portability and hideability is the name of the game so go for a small package with the right stuff. Buy a large roll of nylon line which can be used for many purposes in addition to fishing. Get a small trident spear to attach to any long pole when needed. Don't forget a decent knife for clearning any you catch.

Regarding cleaning; its a necessary task but please don't forget to brain the fish into a minimum of a coma before doing the job.

Always scale the fish first while there is something to hang on to. You can hold onto the tail with pliers or clamp it down on the dock with something while you draw the scaler upward from the tail. Doing the rest of the fish is pretty straight forward. Just make sure you take them all off. They don't help to make an otherwise very tasty fish dinner very enjoyable.

Cleaning starts at the little opening under and to the rear of the fish. The tip of the knife is inserted and brought all the way forward to between the gills. Remove the head by laying the fish on its side and cut down halfway through, on a line from behind the head to behind the side fins. Then flip the fish and make the same cut on the other side. Head and innards can be used for fertilizer. Clean the insides until you see rib cage. No bladders or other material should remain. Two deep cuts are made along each side and into the base of the top center fin and it can then be pulled out fairly easily. Any other minor rudder fins can be cut out along with cutting the tail off to finish that job.

For plain still fishing, the sinker goes on the end of the fishing line. A hook with leader gets tied on somewere above the sinker, allowing for some distance off the bottom of the pond. A bobber is tied on the line, up from the sinker something more than the depth of the pond. It will keep you informed of any major action on the hook along with keeping the hook and bait off the bottom. I have used a bow and arrow for fishing. There are special fishing arrows with barbs and a line attached. Also the spear can be used for shallow water fish. Still remember a couple of 30 inch catfish we got that way.

Good luck.


-- Floyd Baker (, April 17, 1999.

Mary: Look under "Bait and Tackle" in your phone book and talk to the locals to find out about your fishing season, any laws and rules, what fish are present when and where, etc. They will be helpful and give you the best advice for the area you are in. Also find out what is good to eat, not good to eat, or possibly dangerous. Some fish have spines in their dorsal and/or pectoral fins that can give you a bad infection if you grab them the wrong way, others are poisonous, others have sharp teeth and bite. The techniques you use can vary greatly also - from fishing in a boat to sitting on a dock, ocean, freshwater, brackish, etc.

Talk to your local fisherman to get these answers and enjoy learning it now, while you have time to and befopre you may need to.

-- Rob Michaels (, April 17, 1999.

In Oklahoma my uncle was a commercial fisherman...he would gig with the spear......he would run trot lines (long line with many hooks and milk jugs for flotation) ...we would seign with a long net....and some people used dynamite or a telephone fastened to a battery with electric lines in the water (just give the fish a ring).

-- joe bob (, April 17, 1999.


You don't enjoy cleaning flopping fish? Just another part of the challange! Good basic discription There are special knives for fileting and cleaning. Get the right knives for each job and life will be simpler. And I pulled the gills first and then slit from throat to anus. Watch you don't slit the gall bladder as this could spoil the taste of the fish. You can eat parts of the head. The cheeks of fish is much like chichen and the eyes are quite nutty. We would eat fish livers also. And eggs right out of the fish.

Dynamite might work short term but long term you will have no fish left. I would recommend filement net for fresh water and salmon nets for salt water if you want to catch a larger quantity.

Mary you didn't say where you plan on fishing, river lake or ocean? Each has possible alternatives. Also are you in a colder place and expect ice on the water?

Joe I commercial fished for 5 years (40' steel hull) and never heard of the telephone bit. You sure that it wasn't some kind of joke? Corn kernals though are apparently effective. But as I was more inclined towards tons of fish and not pounds it never was needed. Fish swim at differant depths at differant times of the year. So that is how you know where to find them by depth sounder and the depth the freshest fish were in the nets pulled. Just a little fish tip

I have never used throw nets but the idea is great and might be worth a try. One would need a boat but a raft would do.

One of these days I should put a thread about commercial fishing but half or more would be fish tales, and water stories. Venturing into the stories about the "ones that got away". I have personally seen a 52 lb trout and knew someone that tagged a 104 lb. trout.

For the fresh water fisherman. Aparently suckers are good for canning. On another list a lady said that was all she ever canned. She just dried the white fish and pike. I could not believe it but there you go. Anyone else hear of this?

Another little fish pecularity, they have there own skin and it can be tanned. Now I have never done this but it would have some application. It would make nice gloves for one, very soft.

If you ever go out in a boat check your fuel and what not. Being stuck out on the water dead is not a fun position. Six days on open water just because the captian forgot to put a hose clamp on the fuel line. In nature stupidity will get you killed.

Fishing, sneeking up on mother nature and taking what you need.

Oh and always watch for the flying losh, :o)

-- Briam (, April 17, 1999.

My folks had a lake cottage in Wisconsin back in the late thirties, and I fished a lot. My father built a cleaning bench out in the back yard, so flying scales and various drips wouldn't mess up the kitchen. It was a little higher than table height so it was easy to stand there to work. I used to secure the fish to the table with a nail driven thru the base of its tail to the benchtop.

When you're scaling, scales fly off in all directions. Wear old clothes or at least a bib apron. You may want a pan of clean water handy to rinse your hands now and then.

Keep a bucket handy for offal. It will draw raccoons or better like crazy if you don't secure it.

Somebody else can tell you how to clean fish without scales -- bullhead, catfish, etc. I never got the hang of that.

-- Tom Carey (, April 17, 1999.


Try "Fishing For Dummies" through Amazon. Not trying to insinuate anything in regards to your intelligence :-)), it just so happens that it is an excellent "getting started" book for fishing. It covers equipment, basic skills, techniques, types of fish, filleting, etc.

Hope that helps.


-- David (, April 17, 1999.

Re: catfish (and maybe other scaleless fish)

According to what I remember seeing Grandpa do:

Cutting and gutting is as described for scaled fish above.

Instead of scaling -- Use pliers to grasp cut edges of skin and peel off.

-- No Spam Please (, April 17, 1999.

Catfish and bullheads are skinned but do it slowly. The skin does tend to pull the flesh away with it. Have a knife ready to cut the meat away from the skin when it doesn't separate by itself.

BTW and IMHO, these are the best tasting fish.

Another BTW is that this same fishing gear, with a small bright piece of cloth attached to the hook, will do for froggin. You can't beat a nice juicy set of bullfrog legs. I'm talking about the ones that go about a foot or more from nose to toe. Better than chicken.

As with the fish, wack the frogs on the head with something heavy, so they don't know what's going on. By the time they would've woke up, they won't. The legs are simply cut off at the hip joint and then skinned. You can salt them a little and watch them twitch if you want a lesson in neurology.

BTW; I hope this doesn't sound like I have no feelings or anything like that. Its a matter of gathering food on the one hand, and it was very facinating to watch and learn from my grandfather when I was small. I'm his age now and just glad there's a chance to pass a little info on to others. There isn't much call to go froggin these days but things may change.


-- Floyd Baker (, April 18, 1999.

Mary- assuming you mean fresh water fishing(pond, river, etc), just pick up an inexpensive rod and reel (shakespeare for instance is a fine brand)- at K-Mart or a fishing/hunting store if you have one. then pick up some sinkers, hooks, little attacher thingies(I forget their name), bobbers. Dig some worms, hook it all up and you're in busines. Bobber goes on line about a couple of feet up, sinker is a few inches from end, attacher thingie at end, hook attaches to that, and worm attaches to hook- put the hook through him several times so he's firmly attached. then, cast away and see what you get. If you look for a spot with fishermen now, they'll be very helpful to you. don't forget you need a fishing license.(At least in our state you do- check yours- fines are big for infractions)

happy fishing- I'm determined to find time to do some this year- got a new reel too!

-- anita (, April 18, 1999.

There are a number of books on "primitive" survival techniques that will also give you some other ideas. Authors include Tom Brown (of "The Stalker" fame), Ragnar Benson, and a host of others.

Basically, the idea is if you are in a true "survival" situation, it is best to be prepared with some fish traps, turtle traps, nets, or at least the basic materials and knowledge to make and to use them. You then let the traps or trot lines, whatever, work for you while you do other necessary chores. Of course, a trot line can get robbed pretty fast by a snapper or a large pike or a gator, if you live in gator country....

Don't forget those turtles, by the way. A fifteen pound snapper or an eight pound softshell is pretty common, and make darn fine eating.

-- Jon Williamson (, April 18, 1999.

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