Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.
Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish. Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.
Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.

Glossary of Common Fishing Terms

Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.
Fishing information on a wide variety of fishing topics in an easy-to-search format.

Quick Fishing Information Search:

fresh water fishing identification.

Gary Engberg Outdoors fishing articles.

Tony Puccio Serious Walleye.

Glossary of Common Fishing Terms

Adipose Fin - a small fleshy fin with no rays, located between the dorsal and caudal fins.

Angling - taking fish by hook and line. This includes bait and fly fishing, casting, trolling and the use of landing nets to complete the catch.

Artificial Lure - means a manmade lure manufactured to imitate natural bait. Artificial lures include spoons, spinners and plugs made of metal, plastic, wood and other non-edible materials. They also include plastic products made to resemble worms, eggs, fish and other aquatic organisms.

Artificial Fly - means any commonly accepted single hook wet and dry flies, streamers, and nymphs without spinner, spoon, scoop, lip or any other fishing lure or bait attached. The fly or leader may be weighted but no weight shall be attached to the fly or to the terminal tackle in a manner that allows the weight to be suspended from or below the hook.

Blade - means the rotating, shaped, flat metal component of spinners and spinner baits. In a vast range of sizes, shapes, gauges and colours.

Blade bait - means any spinner or spinnerbait with a rotating blade.

Bucktail - literally means the tail fur from a buck (a deer). Used as a dressing on trebles and singles to add bulk and attraction to a lure. The term is also frequently used to describe a large spinner with a dressing of bucktail.

Bullet Sinker - used in combination with a slip shot or lead head jig. The bullet sinker slides loosely on the line that allows for variation in depth and extra weight.

Buzzbait - this might mean one of two things. It normally means a type of spinner bait with a prop blade designed to be fished quickly across the surface, or sometimes it refers to an inline spinner with a prop blade instead of a normal blade.

Cast Net - means a net not exceeding eight feet in diameter without walls or sides that is thrown to take minnows, alewives, smelt and shad in the Great Lakes and connecting waters.

Caudal Fin - the tail fin.

Coolwater Fish - means those species of fish other than trout/salmon that have regulations applied to them.

Crank - means to simply retrieve a lure by winding (=cranking) the reel handle, as opposed to using rod movements to impart extra action.

Crankbait - means a plug, usually with a diving lip, originally designed to be retrieved with a steady crank.

Crawler - means a surface lure that appears to be crawling across the water surface on a steady retrieve.

Daily Limit - means the total number of fish, amphibians or reptiles that you are permitted to catch and keep in one day. Also see Possession Limit.

Descaling - a condition in which a fish has lost a certain percentage of scales.

Designated Trout Lake - means any lake so designated by the State in which trout are the predominant game fish.

Designated Trout Stream - means any stream so designated by a State that contains a significant population of trout or salmon.

Dip Net - means a net without walls that is lifted vertically.

Dorsal Fin - the fin located on the back of the fish and in front of the adipose fin (if it is present).

Dressed Fish - a fish which has been cleaned by removing the entrails. Dressed fish also may be filleted and/or have their head, gills and scales removed.

Drop-Off - a fast change in depth usually associated with a flat, point, creek channel or all of them. A topo map will show the contour lines close together.

Dropper Line - a line in addition to the main fishing line, that contains a hook. Dropper lines are usually attached to the main line.

Fish Crib - means a manmade structure usually marked on lake maps.

Florida rigged - means a rig that's the same as Texas rig except it has a sinker that screws into the top of the plastic worm.

Gaff - is a handled hook that can be used to assist an angler in landing a lawfully hooked fish.

Girth - is a measurement that is similar to measuring someone's waist. It is best measured with a fabric ruler (such as tailor uses) or, by drawing a string around the fish at its widest point (perpendicular to the length of the fish) marking where the string overlaps and then measuring the distance between the overlapping points on a conventional ruler.

Glider - means a type of jerkbait that glides from side to side in a zig-zag fashion on alternate strokes of the rod.

Hand and Landing Net - means a mesh bag of webbing or wire, suspended from a circular, oval or rectangular frame attached to a handle. These are the most common fishing nets used in Michigan.

Hard bait - means any hard-bodied lure like a plug or jerkbait made from wood or plastic.

Hook - means a single, double or treble pointed hook. A hook, single, double or treble pointed and attached to a manufactured artificial lure shall be counted as 1 hook.

In-line spinner - means a spinner that is simply mounted on a central shaft, to differentiate it from a spinnerbait. Sometimes refers specifically to a type of spinner that has a specially shaped in-line blade requiring no clevis.

Jerk - means a fast and powerful stroke of the rod used to impart action into a jerkbait.

Jerkbait - means any plug/topwater lure that dives beneath the surface when you jerk. It has to be have its action imparted by rod movement. Most jerkbaits have very little or no action when cranked.

Jig - means a simple lure consisting of a single hook with a lead weight moulded around it. Usually dressed with a soft plastic grub or worm. Sizes vary from absolutely tiny 1/32 oz. ultra-lites for any small fish up to several ounces for wreck fishing at sea for cod and ling. Used originally for vertical fishing from boats over deep water.

Jointed Lures - means a lure that has a joint in the middle to give erratic action.

Leader - usually made of steel or nylon about 10-60lb test it is hooked at the end of the line to prevent the line from being cut.

Lead Head Jigs - various sized hooks weighted with lead. Usually 1/8 ounce to 1/4 ounce sizes are preferred for walleye and smallmouth. Use 1/16 ounce and 1/8 ounce for panfish.

Length - means the total length of a fish in inches, as measured in a straight line along a flat surface, from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail.

Minnows - are chubs, shiners, dace, stonerollers, sculpins (muddlers), mudminnows and suckers of a size used for bait in "hook and line" fishing.

Narrows - areas where points come together and create a restricted water flow. Walleyes sometimes prefer these areas during the summer when reefs are not available. Late evening and night-fall fishing in these areas produce fantastic walleyes.

Neutral Buoyancy - describes a plug that neither sinks or rises when the retrieve is stopped. Because of variations in weight of leaders, buoyancy of line, density of water at different temperatures, and wear and tear on the plug it is almost impossible to suspend the plug exactly right.; yet, allowing the plug to suspend, hardly moving, is sometimes very effective for pike.

Points - spits of land that jut out into the lake from a larger land form. Smallmouth frequent these landmarks through out much of our season. Walleye tend to locate near points in the spring.

Point and Shank

Popper - means a topwater plug with a dished face that "pops" noisily against the water surface when twitched.

Possession Limit - is equal to the Daily Limit and vary by individual state and species. Visit the individual State Fish & Wildlife websites for possession limit information.

Prop bait - means a topwater plug that has one or more propellor-type spinning blades mounted at either end or in the middle of its body. These blades rotate and repeatedly splash into the surface of the water as the plug is retrieved.

Pull - means a type of rod movement that pulls the rod tip around from pointing almost directly at the lure, sometimes through 90 degrees, this is a steady movement to move the lure quicker than cranking without pulling it off course like a twitch or a jerk. With a sinking lure this would result in a sink and draw retrieve.

Pull Bait - means a type of jerkbait designed to be worked with steady pulls.

Refuge- - an area of a lake that has special regulations to minimize or prevent the harvest of fish.

Rip - means a type of rod movement to impart extra action into a lure, a very fast pull.

Rough Fish - those species of fish considered to be of either poor fighting quality when taken on tackle or of poor eating quality (carp, gar, suckers, etc...).

Sculling - technique using a canoe paddle in a figure eight motion to slowly propel or control the speed of the canoe. Most commonly used while fishing.

Seining - means to fish with or catch fish or reptiles with a seine, which is a large net with sinkers on one edge and floats on the other that hangs vertically in the water and is used to enclose fish when its ends are pulled together.

Sink and Draw - means a simple retrieve pattern where the lure is allowed to sink while the rod is lowered and the line tightened before the rod is raised again to lift the lure. Most often used for spoons, jigs and spinnerbaits.

Slip bobber- means a bobber that the line goes through that relies on a bobber stop to set depth.

Snagging - means attempting to take fish in a manner that the fish does not take the hook voluntarily in its mouth. In most states it is unlawful to snag game fish.

Soft, Soft bait or Soft rubber - means any lure made from moulded soft rubber. Most often used as jig bodies or trailers.

Spearing - means to use a sharp-pointed instrument with barbs in order to spear a fish.

Spinner - means a fishing lure consisting of a rotating blade on a wire shaft that also contains a body or bead and hook.

Spinner Bait - means a "V"-shaped, wire-framed lure with a blade or blades on one arm of the "V" and a hook and lead weight on the other, the hook is normally dressed in a skirt of rubber strands, but bucktails are also used. Essential pike lure.

Spinner Rig- or Lindy rig, about 5 feet of line from 6-12lb test with a #8 walleye hook, maybe beads about a foot from the hook and a spinner about 3ft. from the hook.

Spinning Reel - means an open faced reel held upside down.

Split Shot Sinker - a small ball of lead, typically partially split which can be placed directly on the fishing line to add weight and depth to lures.

Spoon - means a simple lure consisting of a shaped piece of metal plate and a hook. Huge range of sizes, shapes and colours, for all predatory fish.

Stick Bait - menas a topwater plug that had to be worked using a "walk-the-dog" retrieve. This means a short soft pull then a pause, pull, pause etc., this will set the plug zig-zagging across the surface, very effective for summer pike.

Still Fishing - the method of fishing that usually involves the use of a bobber to suspend live bait at a certain depth. Two techniques that are commonly used are a fixed bobber (simply clipped on your line) and a slip bobber.

Stinger - means an extra hook fixed behind the normal hook on the tail of a lure. Most often seen on spinnerbaits.

Suspend (See Neutral buoyancy)

Swill Water - The heaviest weedy area in a body of water.

Tagged or Marked Fish - means any fish that has had one of its fins clipped/removed or has an external tag attached to a fin or its body. Tagged fish are usually part of a research study. See page 36 for details.

Teardrop - means a lure shaped like a teardrop that flutters when it is jigged.

Trailer - means anything attached to the rear hook of a lure used to add attraction or bulk. Most often a soft rubber grub.

Trapping - means to catch or take by use of a device, such as a cage or net, designed to capture a fish or animal.

Twitch - means a fast but not necessarily violent movement of the rod tip, tightening a slack line to move a lure erratically.

Topwater - means any lure designed to be fished on the surface.

Trolling - (or Trailing) means pulling a lure through the water from a boat. (Profoundly boring! Unless the takes are coming regularly.)

Ultra-lite - means using very light-weight tackle and small lures to catch small fish.

Walleye Chop - means waves that are about 1-2 ft. tall.

Weed Beds - large growths of weeds that provide cover and cool oxygenated water, primarily for large northerns. Dead and dying weed beds will not be productive. Small weed beds may produce some panfish (crappies, bluegill or perch).

Weir - means a fence or enclosure set in water to block or retain fish.

Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.
Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.
Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.
Fishing information on bass, walleye, muskie, pike and other fresh water fish.

© 2005 - 2011 Broadbent & Williams, Inc. and - All rights reserved - Madison, Wisconsin 53711    

Business Opportunities    Privacy statement     Contact

Tag words: fishing, fish, information, info, bass, walleye, muskie, musky, muskellunge, northern pike, perch, trout, lake trout, salmon, steelhead, catfish, sunfish, crappie, pumpkinseed, fishing information, lunar tables, sun, moon data, fishing clubs, catch and release, fishing knots, Walleye, Bass, Muskie, fishing info, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio.