Guest Post: Fishing as an important survival skill

Take your kids fishing

Being a survivalist means that you are taking responsibility for your own safety. Other important aspects would include having the right kind of gear to ensure that you do not get lost in the wilderness. You can refer to this post if you want to find out the essential things you must know for your handheld GPS. However, in this post, I would primarily focus on how you can increase your survival rate by fishing.

Fishing is nothing new. In fact, it has a long history dated back to the 

Paleolithic Period. Back then, fishing and hunting provide the majority of food source (especially essential proteins in which we will discuss below). Today, most take fishing as a hobby or sport rather than as a survival skill simply because we have easy access to foodstuffs (that is, if everything stays the same).

For preppers like us, we tend to prepare for the worst. This is when fishing becomes important. Sure, you would have stock up enough foodstuffs and have a solid bug out plan. However, we all know that things can go wrong and we might end up stranded with nothing.

The point is, fishing is a great additional skill to have that might prove useful in times of need. I go into more specific detail as to why fishing is an important skill below and in the end, I laid down a few fishing tips.

Reason 1: As compared to hunting, it is easier and much more efficient.

Hunting is important but efficient-wise, I think not. I mean, when you are hunting, you are just hunting for an animal and I find that really exhausting and just not convenient for me to stock up my food pile. During fishing however, you can actually multitask.

Ever heard of trolling? No? Well, to put it simply trolling involves throwing multiple lines into the water from a boat. Now you just got to improvise it a bit. Obviously, you do not have a trolling boat. I mean you are possibly stranded or perhaps maybe just camping for fun alone. Just cast multiple lines you made all at once with your hands. Make sure to hook lures you can make or live baits you can find around you and you will be fishing in no time.

The best thing is that if you spend a little time learning different kinds of fishing techniques, you are prepared for different conditions since different techniques are better suited to different types of fish, water conditions and the gears you have with you.

Hunting on the other hand, you don’t really have much choices. If you are good at it, then it’s easy. Otherwise, don’t even think about it.

Reason 2: A great source of protein

  • Did you know that about 85% of the fish caught in the world is consumed by humans? The balance is mostly turned into fishmeal.
  • In the year 2013, consuming fish has provided about 3.1 billion people in the world around 20% of their consumption of animal protein.

Facts courtesy of

It is undeniable that fish as a food is a source of high quality protein. Its meat is high in protein and the best part is that it is easy to digest which is a huge plus for those with sensitive bowel movements.

Even experts agree that just by consuming a small amount of fish, it can have a remarkable impact upon your body by supplying the essential protein needed for cells regeneration and balance body metabolism.

Reason 3: It Is Definitely the Fastest Way to Ensure Your Survival

You don’t get what I mean? To put it simply, your death in the wilderness will be prolonged. This means you get to survive longer in the wild. Compared to hunting, fishing is way more convenient.

You want to look for edible plants? I do not see why not but the content in fish as mentioned in reason 2 has all the protein and essential vitamins needed by your body. So why not just fish instead to stock up your food source?

Of course, knowing which plants are edible and what kills you is definitely on the top of my “Must-Know” list but when you are out in the wild trying to survive, you want everything to be done in a quick yet safe manner to ensure your survival out there if anything happens.

Also memorising and studying the wide variety of plants is time consuming but please do not misunderstand me. To justify myself, it is important knowing the type of plants but just don’t waste your time trying to learn the 1000 type of species out there in the wild only to blank out when you are out there in the wilderness only to eat the wrong one.

Helpful fishing tips

So I made my point on why fishing is a great survival skill to pick up, let’s move into some helpful tips to get you started.

Tip #1 Rig Up Your Fishing Lures, Hooks and Lines

You can make you own lures from small, torn pieces of cloth. Spoons can be easily made from any small pieces of shiny metal and as for bobbers; pieces of Styrofoam or any capped bottle will work as long as it is able to float to help them imitate natural live baits so you can tempt the fish to bite your lures like insects or a minnow. In most waters, torn pieces of clothing mostly work the best.

The easiest and simplest material to make a hook out of is soda can tabs. Just cut through the piece of metal and make it into a hook. If you have a knife in your hands which is even better, a little bit of whittling can take you further. Just whittle some hooks from small pieces of wood or bones and you will have a strong and efficient hook in no time.

Tip #2 Try handfishing!

Handfishing or more fondly known as noodling in some areas is really easy to do. If the water is not too deep and not too cold then you may be able to catch a couple of them using your bare hands. Just be careful or sharp rocks and boulders so you don’t hurt yourself.

Tip #3 Netting

One of my favourite methods to use when I am out camping and is especially useful and efficient in small water bodies where fishes are plentiful. The net can be made using your very own t-shirt or just a large piece of clothing. Trap the fishes by pushing it and walking your way towards the bank then lift them up. Super easy and you won’t starve too!

Tip #4 Cook your fish ASAP

This is to prevent your fish from spoiling easily since it is moist and is exposed to the open air. Don’t waste your effort and just cook the damn thing immediately. Make sure to cook them thoroughly because raw fish may pose dangerous health risks like food poisoning because you just do not know what the fish ate in the water and wild fishes may contain parasites that might even kill you.


Fishing is not that difficult (well, if you compare it to hunting) but it still take practice for you to be somewhat good at it. Like other survival skills, spend some time practicing the techniques.

What do you think? Is fishing important for survival?

Author Bio: I am John Lewis, a blogger, survivalist and outdoor enthusiast. You can follow me over at Epic Wilderness.

The Author

John Lewis

Hey guys, I am John Lewis. I feel that equipping yourself with survival knowledge is a must in this world filled with uncertainties. In my free time, I enjoy brushing up my survival skills, being outdoors and blog over at Epic Wilderness

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