How to Catch Fish With Electricity

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Catching fish with electricity is a relatively easy, humane way of fishing or collecting sample populations of a particular species in the water. Scientists prefer this method to live baiting because it simply stuns the fish as opposed to killing it outright, allowing the expert to analyze their sample before releasing it back into the wild. Electrofishing for recreational purposes is a new method of catching fish for eating, allowing fishermen to harvest their catch with minimal hassle and preparation.


Look for fish jumping or other kinds of activity that indicates where there is a significant population of fish. An ideal spot is a small pond or river, where the fish are isolated from larger bodies of water. Enclosed aquatic areas make it easy to surprise the animal in its natural habitat without them swimming out of grasp.

Turn on the backpack generator and wade into the water. Whoever is wearing the backpack should place the anode pole attached to the backpack generator in the water. The second person should be prepared to scoop up fish swimming to the surface.

When the DC current is generated with the pole in the water, the surrounding fish start to convulse and actually swim toward the source of the electricity in the water. As they swim closer to the current, the fish become stunned by the electricity. At this point, scoop up the stunned fish at the surface and keep them out of the water so they can asphyxiate.


  • Always be careful to avoid electric shock when electrofishing. It is not recommended you build your own generator; buy one from a certified source instead.


  • Electrofishing is particularly effective for catfishing due to how they habitate deep in the water.


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