Now is the perfect time with what is happening in the world today to take your children , grandchildren, nephews/nieces fishing? Fishing is the best way for families to bond together and it also shows our kids 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 which is what we all need now!
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 hopefully catch fish. Below are some ideas and tips that we think will help when taking a fishing trip with young children and enable them enjoy our great past time..
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 is a good idea because the kids will probably get fed up if they are standing holding a rod and they are not catching fish.
Prior to the fishing trip its 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.
Get them 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 good area
For a successful fishing trip with your kids you need to decide on where to go. This will ideally be an area 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)
Teach 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 coating.
If you want to take a picture of your children with their catch take a photo quickly and return the fish to the water.
Fishing tackle for youngsters
When you get to the fishing area 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 them.
For a child's first trip we 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 the bait.
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.