How to Make a Homemade Fish Trap: 3 Best Ways

Catching fish doesn’t have to be expensive if you know how to make a homemade fish trap. Learn the basics of creating an effective and inexpensive DIY fishing tool that will help you land more catches with ease!

It’s a known fact that fish is the first option you have for food when you live off-grid, and you’re lucky enough to be near a body of water. 

Fish is one of the most versatile survival meals available. It’s high in protein and fatty oils and can be found almost anywhere with open water. However, in a survival scenario, you are unlikely to have a rod and reel with you. So, what now?

A far more contemporary development, you can capture one fish at a time with a rod and reel while targeting a particular breed of fish. This scenario will not always be the case when you’re in survival mode.

When you’re trying to stay alive, you’re not going to be very picky. Your ultimate goal now is to catch as many larger fish as possible, regardless of species.

To catch several fish at a time, you can’t just stick to one method. The most effective method is to use survival fish traps.

These traps grab and retain fish using natural and found items until you can examine your catch. Although some take a little longer to put together than others, they’re all quite simple.

Let’s go ahead and look at how to make fish traps in three ways to get you through another day in the wild.

hook and bait

If you’ve caught fish before, you’ll immediately think of the hook and bait method. A piece of bait, such as an earthworm, is placed on a hook attached to a fishing line. Then you cast the rope into the water, hoping that a small fish would eat the bait.

The hook-and-bait approach could work if you’re near a body of water with a lot of fish. It’s also OK if you’re fishing for fun.

Another variant for the hook and bait method is the L7 Fish Pole Trap. It’s a spring pole trap with a trigger and is a great simple fish trap. It’s also considered a basic fishing trap that you can set and forget. This trap can function but won’t require you to be there for it.

To make this trap, you’ll need a springy sapling and cut it to the right length, and hammered it into the ground as part of the system. The “fishing pole” is what it’s called.

You can tether the sapling fishing pole to the trap’s “L” portion notched and another stick hammered into the ground that looks like the number “7”. Finally, the “L” part is attached to a baited hook in the water.

Finally, the L7 trap can be activated when the fish eats the bait and tugs on the line, the sapling springs back up, and puts the hook in place. You can also use the L7 trigger in both water and land traps.

But I wouldn’t depend on this in a survival emergency. This strategy takes too much patience and a good amount of luck. You could be hungry before catching a fish!

Stationary Fish Traps

stationary fish trap

A stationary fish trap is your best chance to stick put in a survival scenario. 

This approach entails creating a survival fish trap that remains fixed. Various designs all function on the same principle: the fish enter through a larger entrance or are pushed into the opening and cannot exit, kind of like entering a bottle.

You’ll still have to wait for the fish, but there are some advantages, such as not having to do any labor. Thus, allowing you to do other things like building your survival shelter or having to go in the water.

One good example of a stationary fish trap is a funnel fish trap. It works best on small areas of flowing or tidal water. The idea is that the fish will be drawn into the funnel by the tide or the stream.

In a compressed stream, you’ll start by erecting a straight wall using posts or rocks. It should be thin enough to enable water to flow while preventing fish from passing through.

After that, you can put your funnel in place. The way to position the funnel will depend on the type of fish in the region. You have to take note of whether water is going upstream or downstream. Either way, make sure to position the funnel against the stream. 

Then, you can construct a V-shaped wall with the pointed side is facing the first wall. Then, at the pointy end, cut a tiny hole to enable one fish to swim through at a time.

The tide or stream should flow through with minimal resistance to complete the trap, allowing the fish to go into the funnel trap. You can also use bait or let the river do the job for you.

Here’s a DIY video guide to help you build a stationary fish trap.

Moving Fish Traps

moving fish traps

This type of fishing isn’t going to require any fancy tools and materials and is pretty straightforward. You’ll need a net and be on your feet or a boat in the middle of open water that has a good amount of game fish ready to be caught.

The way moving fish trap works typically requires moving the netting or trap through the water rather than leaving it in one position. Dragging a fishing net from a boat comes within this category. This method has the advantage of making you more proactive. 

Instead of waiting, you may identify fish or huge fish schools and pursue them. But doing this method will still be a waste of time if you don’t visibly see fish swimming around. Before going with the DIY fish trap route, scope the waters first.

However, you’ll almost certainly need a large net and, if you don’t have a boat, you’ll have to wade into the sea.

Last Words

Fishing traps for survival are valuable survival skills. 

You can consider teaching your children how to fish at an early stage. It can even be a pleasant pastime for both you and your children! You are essentially educating your children to feed themselves when exposed to fish traps, and nets.

All of these traps are simple to construct. Even if you fail to capture a fish at first, your children will remember sitting on the stream bank with their parents or guardians, working with their hands to build their very own fish trap.

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1 thought on “How to Make a Homemade Fish Trap: 3 Best Ways”

  1. There are nice details! As for me, if you have two mouths when constructing a stationary fish trap, it’s considerably more straightforward. To avoid having to continue dismantling the container, cut off two bottoms. Instead, use a fishing line to join them together permanently. Or nylon string. Make a series of holes all over it. Add bread/crackers to the mixture at this point. In addition, there are pebbles to keep it submerged. And to make it simpler to get at the minnows you’ve caught, remove the outer cover of the container. I’ve used 2 liters, 20-ounce juice bottles, and more to make myself fish traps.


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