This may sound a bit familiar to you: you are out on the water, but the fish aren’t biting. After some time, you may be asking yourself “why am I not catching any fish?”
Every angler has experienced this type of “drought” at some point or another. Thankfully, we have some solutions to help prevent this from ever happening to you again.
Top 7 Reasons You May Not Be Catching Fish:
1. Faulty Preparations
The most common mistake that keeps beginner anglers from catching fish is unpreparedness. How can you expect to catch anything if you didn’t pack the correct gear?
A simple solution to avoid this mistake is to create a list of all necessary equipment you intend to use. When packing, double check that all items on the list are packed.
When you are selecting the equipment that you will be using, don’t just pick things at random. You will want to create a plan. Different types of equipment are needed to catch different types of fish. So, you will first need to decide on which type and size of fish you will be looking to catch.
Additionally, you will want to make sure you are wearing the proper clothing, the right pair of shoes, and have safety precautions. The gear outside of your tacklebox may not affect how many fish you catch, but it certainly can affect the quality of your fishing trip.
2. Fishing the Wrong Areas
The most common mistake made by anglers of all skill levels is spending too much time fishing the wrong spots.
There is an old angling commandment called the 90/10 rule. This rule essentially states that 90 percent of the fish are in 10 percent of the water. This means that if you are not catching any fish, you should probably find a new fishing spot.
If you are fishing in the same spot for more than a half an hour and you haven’t caught anything in that time, you should move on. Try not to waste more than 45 minutes in the same spot because chances are, if the fish aren’t biting, the fish just aren’t there.
A tip to help you avoid settling in the wrong areas to fis is to keep moving until you actually catch something. Once you find the 10% of the water where the fish have chosen to congregate, you can settle in that spot and watch your luck change.
3. Fishing with the Wrong Lures or Bait
If you see other anglers catching fish in the same area but you aren’t, then chances are you are using the wrong lure or bait.
It’s important to switch up your lures and technique. Some fish, such as bass, are capable of learning fishing patterns. If you drop the same lure in every time, the fish may get wise to it. So, if something worked last week or even just yesterday, it’s not guaranteed to work again. Don’t be afraid to experiment with your lures and bait until you find something that the fish respond to.
4. You’re Using the Wrong Colors
It may come as a surprise that something as seemingly simple as color can have a major impact on your fishing success. Some fish are attracted to specific colors. Bass, for example, are drawn to the color red. Likewise, some colors can repel fish.
If you find that the fish aren’t biting, then try switching up the color of your lure. You may be surprised what a difference this switch could make.
5. Fishing at the Wrong Time of Day
Many anglers believe that with enough patience and persistence, fish can be caught at any time of the day. While there may be some truth in this belief, there is no denying that fish activity changes during certain times of the day.
Typically, most species of fish will be more active during the morning, late evening or during overcast conditions. When the fish are more active, you are more likely to catch them.
6. Water Temperature
It may surprise you to learn that the temperature of the water can play a big role in your fishing success. All freshwater fish are cold blooded, which means they are deeply affected by the temperature of their environment. The behavior of these fish, such as their activity level and eating habits, will change depending on water temperature.
Each species of fish may prefer different temperatures. Some species may not be able to tolerate certain temperatures. If the water temperature gets too hot or cold, these fish tend to shut down.
If the fish aren’t biting, it may be due to the water being too cold or too hot for them to behave as they normally would. If this is the case, try to slow down your presentation and cast directly on them. This technique will allow the fish to grab the lure without exerting too much energy.
7. You’re Too Loud
Fishing is much like hunting in the sense that your target can be scared off if they see you or hear you. Spooked fish can be almost impossible to catch.
Fish can sense movement, vibrations, and noises. If you do spook the fish, your best bet is to move on to another spot. Avoid scaring off the fish in the first place by being as quiet as you can be.
No angler wants to spend their entire day on the water and end the day without any catches. But sometimes, the fish just don’t bite. Hopefully these tips have given you a bit of insight as to why the fish aren’t being caught and you are able to adjust your technique accordingly.
Best of luck to you. Happy fishing.