Though not believed by all, and not consistent across all fisheries or regions, many fishermen believe in or follow some of these superstitions:

Click here if you want to know where fishing superstitions got there start! If you just want to read, ponder, laugh and snort, please continue!

·         A cloudy day is a good time for fishing. 
·         A dog seen near fishing tackle is bad luck
·         A fisherman always throws the first fish he catches back in the water for luck.
·         A good time to go fishing is when you see a chicken oiling its feathers.
·         A rabbit crossing your path when you are going fishing is a sign of bad luck that day.
·         A woman on board makes the seas angry and is an omen of bad luck
·         After you have put a worm on the hook, spit on it for good luck.
·         Always fish against the wind for luck. 
·         Avoid people with red hair when going to the ship to begin a journey

·         Bananas bring bad luck to fishing and could mean disaster for the trip

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·         Black cats are considered good luck and will bring a sailor home from the sea
·         Carry a fishing pole into the house before you start on a fishing trip and you will not catch any fish.
·         Catfish bite well when it thunders. 
·         Chew anise and spit on your fishing hook for good luck.
·         Cutting your hair or nails at sea is bad luck
·         Disaster will follow if you step onto a boat with your left foot first
·         Do not fish when the wind is in the west; the fish will not bite.
·         Dolphins swimming with the ship are a sign of good luck
·         Don’t look back once your ship has left port as this can bring bad luck
·         Fish become excited and bite well when it is raining.
·         Fish bite best (at night) on the increase of the moon.
·         Fish bite best (in daytime) during the dark of the moon because they cannot see in the dark of the moon and are hungrier.
·         Fish bite best at night during full moon. 

·         Fish bite best at night, and if you play a fiddle or guitar, the fish just can’t stay in the water but will come to the top because they love the music of a fiddle or guitar.

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·         Fish bite best when there is a good soft wind from the south or southeast.
·         Fish bite well when it is thundering. 
·         Fish can see upward, but cannot see downward.
·         Fish do not bite when the wind is in the south. 
·         Fish for the first time in the season on Good Friday and you will be lucky at fishing all year.
·         Fish on the west side of the bank, if the wind is in the west.
·         Fish when the sign is in the “feet’ for luck. 
·         Fish will not bite if it thunders. 
·         Fish will not bite if you use a bright cork on your line.
·         Fish with three or five lines, never with one line, to catch the most fish.
·         Fishermen throw quarters of half dollars over their shoulders to “buy up” some wind when crews are overworked
·         Fishing on Friday is unlucky. 
·         Fishing with crossed lines is unlucky. 
·         Flowers are unlucky onboard a ship
·         Go fishing just after a hard rain. 
·         Good days to fish are the 17th and 18th of the month.
·         If a dragon fly lights on the cork quit fishing for you will catch nothing.
·         If a fisherman goes out to fish, he should always pray/ For perpetual sunshine that will not fade away/ And he will have good luck all day.
·         If a person goes fishing every Sunday, someday he will catch the devil on his hook and be snatched off the bank into the water and may drown.
·         If a rain comes slowly and falls gently, fish will continue to bite.
·         If fish flop out of the water, fishing is no good, because they are not hungry and will not bite.
·         If fish in a globe are still and inactive, fishing is no good; if fish in a globe are lively, fishing is good.
·         If fish in a tank are at the top, it is a good day for fishing; if your fish stay at the bottom, don’t go fishing, for it is a poor fishing day.
·         If it rains, catfish will bite. 
·         If on your way to fish, you see a pin, pick it up for luck; failing to pick it up will bring you bad luck.
·         If the end of your pole touches the water, you will not be successful at fishing.
·         If the wind is in the south and it is cloudy, you can pull out fish as fast as you put your line in the water.
·         If you carry a fishing pole into the house before a fishing trip you will not catch any fish
·         If you drop your line when going to put it on the pole, throw the line away and attach a new line for you will not get fish on the line you dropped.
·         If you go fishing and play a French harp (harmonicon), all the snakes around will come.
·         If you go fishing and see a big fish jump up, it will be bad luck for you all day.
·         If you go on a fishing party, the first person to catch a fish will have good luck.
·         If you go to a pond and make the water real muddy, the fish will all come to the top.
·         If you play a fiddle or guitar, the fish will come to the surface because they love the music
·         If you talk while fishing, the fish will hear you and not bite
·         If you talk while fishing, the fish will hear you and not bite.
·         If you want to catch a two or three pound fish, always use a grasshopper for bait.
·         If you want to fish for game fish, fish with your bait shallow.
·         If you want to fish for rough fish – cat, buffalo, sturgeon or carp – fish with your bait deep.
·         If your bait runs out, dip your hook in motor oil; which is very good for catfish.
·         It is bad luck to see an albatross or hear a loon cry
·         It is unlucky to bait your hook with a worm by using your left hand.
·         It is unlucky to take a dog on a fishing trip. 
·         Let your shadow fall on the water while you are fishing and you will scare the fish away.
·         Never fish with a seine on a clear night; you will have any luck until you fish on a cloudy night.
·         Never let anyone step over your line; it will cause you bad luck.
·         Never say good luck or allow someone to say good luck to you
·         Never start a trip on a Friday The best day to start a trip is on a Sunday, “Sunday sail, never fails”
·         Never tell anyone how many fish you have, while you are fishing, or you will be unlucky.
·         Never whistle because it will bring a gale
·         Pouring wine on the deck will bring good luck on a long voyage
·         Put a cigarette paper on your hook, put it in the water and keep walking back and forth with the line to catch bass.
·         Sailors who wear earrings or have tattoos won’t drown
·         Saving the first fish caught brings better luck, but throwing it away is like throwing your luck away.
·         Saying the words “alligator” or “pig” bring bad luck
·         Silver dollars are put underneath the mast when a boat is being built to bring good luck
·         Spitting on your bait will give you luck. 
·         The best time to gig fish is when they begin to roll following the first three warm days of spring; and they will roll for three days.
·         The person who swears while fishing will not catch a fish
·         The person who swears while fishing will not catch a fish.
·         The sign of the “fish” is the good time for fishing.
·         Throwing a pebble into the water excites the fish and makes them bite.
·         To catch sunfish or perch, use salty pork for bait.
·         To change poles while fishing will bring you bad luck.
·         Turn your pocket inside out and you will catch catfish.
·         Use an even number of hooks on your line for luck, as fish will not bite if the number is odd.
·         Use cake for bait and you will catch a lot of fish.
·         Use dough balls to catch carp. 
·         When a rain comes rapidly and falls heavily, fish will stop biting.
·         When a small minnow jumps out of the water, it will be a great and successful day for you, and you will have good luck all day and come home with lots of fish.
·        When owls hoot during the day is a good time for catching catfish
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·         When the wind is in the east, fish on the east side of the bank.
·         When the wind is in the southwest/ The fish bite the best.
·         When you go fishing, if you will take an old looking-glass and hold it so the sun can hit it, it will blind the fish so you can catch them with your hands.
·         When you go fishing, spit on the line and you will get fish by the peck.
·         When you lose your hook, tie bait on the line and continue fishing.
·         Wind from the south, hook in the mouth/ Wind from the east, bite the least/ Wind from the north, further off/ Wind from the west, bite the best.
·         You will not catch any fish, if you see fish humping on a rainy day.
·         You will not catch any more fish if you are struck by a fish’s fin.
·         You will not have any luck, if you fish when the sign is in the “head.”
·         Your will have bad luck if you fish on Sunday. 
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One Response to Though not believed by all, and not consistent across all fisheries or regions, many fishermen believe in or follow some of these superstitions:

  1. Pingback: Sailor's Superstitions: Bad Luck at Sea | Nantucket Brand Blog

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