Fishing can be categorized by animal caught, purpose, location, and gear used. Purpose-based fishing includes commercial, recreational, and sport. Fishing can be done in marine or freshwater locations, with various types of gear including hand fishing, angling, nets, and traps. Other techniques include spearing, electrofishing, and purse seine. Illegal methods include poisoning and blast fishing.
There are many different types of fishing, ranging from angling to electrofishing. Sometimes, it’s categorized by the type of animal caught: for example, fishing for shrimp is called prawning and catching frogs with a toothed spear is called gigging. This practice can also be classified according to the purpose of the fisherman, where the fish is caught, or the gear used.
There are three main categories of purpose-based fishing: commercial, recreational, and sport. The commercial type is made for a living and is considered one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. Another type is recreational, which is done for fun, usually on a small scale. A variation on this is catch-and-release fishing, where anglers catch fish for fun, then remove the hook and release them afterward. Nearly anyone can fish recreationally, although different regions require a license. A variant of recreational fishing is sport fishing, where anglers compete to catch specific types of fish or fish of specific weights.
Fishing can also be classified according to where the fish is caught. When classified this way, there are two broad categories: marine and freshwater. Common types of marine fishing include deep sea, surfcasting and netting. Common freshwater types include angling and trapping.
Another way to classify the different types of fishing is the tackle used.
Many traditional types of fishing are done without any equipment other than a person’s hands. This is often called hand fishing and is most commonly done to catch fish in streams. Some variations are nodling, which is used specifically to catch catfish, and tickling, where a person rubs a fish’s belly to put it into a stupor and then grabs it out of the water. Other types are used on animals other than fish: for example, some people dive underwater to gather sea creatures, especially oysters, lobsters, and abalone.
The most common type of fishing done with portable tackle is angling, in which a person uses a rod with a line attached to the hooked fish. The angler attempts to get the fish to bite by placing bait near the hook or by placing live bait on the hook. A variant of this is fly fishing, where a special rod and line are used.
Other types of hand fishing include kite fishing, where a baited line is attached to a kite; and poke poling, where people take a pole with a line attached to it and stick it under rocks around the shore to try and hook the animals under the rocks. There is also ice fishing, which is done through a hole in the ice, and trolling, in which a person draws a lure through the water to attract fish. Another method is surfcasting, where a person stands on the beach and casts a baited fishing line into the ocean.
Nets and traps
Different types of netting include hand nets, bottom trawls, tangle nets, and cast nets. Bottom trawling, in which a large net is cast from the back of a boat and dragged across the ocean floor or through the water, is most often done by large-scale fishermen. This method is often controversial due to the way it can damage the ocean floor.
There are also a variety of fish trap designs, ranging from something as simple as a plastic bottle with the top cut off, inverted, and put back into the bottom half to baskets with funnel-shaped openings leading into them. Different types of traps to catch specific types of animals, including crab traps, lobster traps and eel traps.
Some fishermen use the animals to aid land fishing or to carry nets, although this practice is not widespread and is usually done on a small scale. One of the most famous ways to do this is with a cormorant, a type of bird. To do this, a person puts a collar around a cormorant’s neck and then dives into the water to catch fish. Since he cannot swallow the fish due to the collar, the angler can then remove the fish from his mouth and throat. Some people even train dogs to help drag the nets. In some areas, dolphins also gather fish to net them and then eat any that escape.
People also commonly use projectiles such as arrows or spears to catch fish. Although ancient spears were powered by hand, modern fishermen often use spearguns to power the spear, making it move faster and work more efficiently. Both types can be done in fresh or salt water.
There are many other techniques, including jigging, in which a fisherman catches squid by repeatedly raising and lowering a hook on a line; electrofishing, in which electricity is sent through the water to stun fish so they can be caught, and purse seine, in which a large net is cast into the water and then gradually pulled together high up, like a drawstring bag.
While discouraged and often illegal, some anglers dump bleach or poison into the water to kill or stun the fish, making them easy to harvest. Another illegal technique is blast fishing, which is the use of explosives to kill fish.