Thinking of taking your children fishing? This is a great way for
families to bond together and it also teaches youngsters of today
there is more to life than ipads, iphones and Xboxes. Fishing also
gets children outside in the fresh air and lets them experience the
wonders of wildlife and nature as well as the art of patience.
Photo courtesy of
Reflections Angling Project
Taking a child fishing can require lots of patience for both child
and adult and being a new learning experience for them you can
expect your child to get things wrong. Bear this in mind and make
allowances. Ultimately when taking kids fishing you need to make it
interesting and fun and for a
child's first fishing trip you want him or her to enjoy it and
Below are some ideas and tips that I think will help when taking a
fishing trip with young children and enable them enjoy this
great past time.
are not an angler yourself and have not been fishing before have a read of these pages
Fishing for Beginners.
When to go :
Make sure it's a dry and
sunny day and the weather is warm. There is nothing worse than
fishing in cold, wet weather and children will soon get bored and
want to go home.
This is important every time you take youngsters fishing.
Make sure you have plenty of drinks and snacks and if its going to
be a scorcher take some sun cream.
You might also want to take some
insect repellent, anti-bacterial wipes to wash hands before eating
their snack and a change of clothes (just in case!).
Taking chairs or a blanket to sit on because the kids will probably
get fed up if they are standing holding a rod and they are not
Prior to the fishing trip it’s a good idea to plan some activities
to keep your child occupied during the times when there are no
bites. You could take a pack of cards, some colouring books or a
couple of games the family can play. If the kids are not catching fish you don't want them to
think the day has been boring or they will not want to come again.
looking forward to the trip :
By this I mean build anticipation and get them excited about their
first fishing trip.
Before the big day out you could read a story or two from an angling
magazine or the weekly fishing papers or buy a couple of picture
books about fishing to build up excitement. Telling kids stories
about fish or fishing and asking them questions is a good way to get
them interested. Keep it very simple though.
Decide on a
For a successful fishing trip with your kids you need to decide on
where to go. This will ideally be a fishery that is well stocked and
the chances of actually catching fish are quite high.
If possible try to choose somewhere that is family friendly and not
too crowded. Children can lose interest quite quickly and because of
this I would consider somewhere where there are other things to do
if the fishing loses it's appeal. Maybe some swings or a slide
nearby. (depending on their age of course)
children about handling fish :
When a child catches a fish they will get excited and may want to
hold the fish or touch it themselves.
Teach them how to handle fish carefully and gently and to return them to
the water as quickly as possible.
Tell them that handling a fish too much can harm the fish by
removing the slimy coating on its skin which is a protective
If you want to take a picture of your children with
their catch take a photo quickly and return
the fish to the water.
You’re Legal :
Check you have the correct
Fishing License and day ticket or permit for fishing.
Fishing tackle for youngsters :
When you get to the fishery your child will want his or her own
fishing rod. Keeping the equipment simple will make it easier for
them to use, so either a fishing rod or a short pole can be set up
For a child's first trip I suggest setting up for float fishing. A float
gives the kids something to watch while they are waiting for a bite
and it's exciting to see disappear under the water when a fish takes
Fishing is exciting and fun when you are getting lots of bites and
catching fish, but as with most things it doesn't always happen that way. If the fishing
is slow use this time to talk about angling and the different types
of baits or species of fish. Keep children interested by talking about the birds, animals and the
nature around you. You could even use this time to take a break from
fishing altogether and have a picnic. Whatever you do don't stick it
out for hours in the hope of catching a fish. If after 2 or 3 hours
you are not getting bites or haven't caught anything it might be
best pack up because if a youngster has to sit for hours on end
without catching a fish they will not be too happy and will probably
not want to go fishing the next time.
Fishing adventures with your kids provides the opportunity of
spending some quality time together as a family. This can build memories that will last
a lifetime, just remember to keep the process simple and pleasurable.