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Fishing Methods



Jigging is widely used to capture squid. A jig is a type of grapnel, attached to a line, which may be manually or mechanically jerked in the water to snag the fish in its body. Jig fishing usually happens at night with the aid of light attraction.


Fishermen use a fishing pole and bait to target a variety of fish, ranging from open ocean swimmers, like tuna and mahi mahi, to bottom dwellers, like cod. Pole/troll fishing is environmentally responsible and a good alternative to pelagic long lining.

Handline fishing

handline fishing

Handline fishing is practised from an anchored or drifting boat. This is a technique with natural bait consisting of a set rod, line taut. It allows prospecting fish in mid-water or on the bottom. Touches are detected by the sensitivity of the tip.


Multi-rigs are used widely for the capture of shrimps in tropical waters and more recently for Nephrops (langoustines or Dublin Bay prawns) and deep-water prawns in temperate waters. The speed at which the net is towed is important, varying with the swimming speed of the target species from about 1.5 to 5 knots for fast swimming fish.


Free diving or scuba diving is a traditional method of collecting lobster, abalone, seaweed, sponges and reef dwelling fish (groupers and snappers) for example. The species, including high value species such as geoduck (giant clam), urchins, sea cucumber, lobster and scallops are now widely harvested by divers. Hand-collection by divers is potentially one of the most species selective and least damaging fishing method, provided harvesting is carried out responsibly.

Trap (nets)

Walls or compounds of netting are set out in a particular way and anchored to the seabed so that fish, once they have entered, are prevented from leaving the trap. The traps are submerged wire or wood cages that attract fish with bait and hold them alive until fishermen return to haul in the catch. In some cases, e.g. salmon traps, long leader nets are arranged from the shore to intercept migrating fish and guide them into the trap.

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