We've all seen the posts online of new anglers asking for "tips" on where to fish, what to use, where someone caught a big fish they posted, or what they were using to catch it. While this seems innocent to the new angler it is incredibly frustrating and disrespectful to anglers who have put their time in to find hotspots. Don't get us wrong, at New Wave Fishing Academy our whole purpose is to educate new anglers how to find and catch fish while they are out on the water. But..... there is a right and wrong way to discuss these topics with anglers. Especially while online where information can be seen and shared instantly to millions of people. Asking for handouts is not the right way to do it.
Think of it this way; If you planted a garden in your own backyard and grew mangoes (something nobody else in town can get) you wouldn't appreciate or even consider putting up with others coming and stealing your mangoes would you? Maybe you have a whole bunch and so missing one or two isn't a big deal. But all of a sudden you can't go get a mango because everyone keeps stealing them before you get to them. They take time to grow, effort to look after, and the resource is scarce. This is the same thing that we and many other experienced anglers see happen over and over again with fishing spots. They put the effort in to find the spot and how to catch them and then the information leaks and all of a sudden everyone and anyone is there catching all the fish you worked so hard to find. The next time you got to try and catch a few fish on your one day off theres none left! Or they have seen so many lures and been hooked so many times they no longer want to bite. This is the situation that angers so many anglers online when others post about fishing spots or catch details that they did not put the work in to find.
So, how do you talk fishing so that you can learn while also respecting the angler you're asking? It's not that hard and a few simple adjustments can get you there.
Don't do it in a public setting like on a fishing group or post comments. Talk to them in person, DM them, or try to set up a phone call. This shows that you respect them and the effort they have put in to learning the information you want.
Offer information instead of just trying to take - tell them what your approach has been and how you have been trying to catch them and ask what you could do different. Show that you respect the process and are not looking for handouts and your results will be much better.
Talk big picture not specifics - Most anglers are very willing to talk strategy. Offering up a specific spot and technique is very valuable information that nobody wants to give up for free. But if you ask about what kind of areas to target (ie. shallows? Deep water? Edges? Cover? Types of lures under different conditions) you're more likely to get an answer. they can tell you exactly what they are doing without offering up the specific lake or spot they worked so hard to find.
If you are given information from someone respect it. Don't turn around and spread it like wildfire to anyone who asks or the message board. This includes not bringing others to a fishing spot someone has showed you without their permission (within reason and depending on the secrecy of the spot of course)
Don't Pry! If someone does offer up some information don't keep digging for more. It is fine to ask for clarification on ideas or strategy but if someone narrows down an area for you to say Bay of Quinte (a random example) don't keep poking and asking for details about where in Bay of Quinte. Yes it is a big area but show them the respect for what they have mentioned. You can easily take that great tip and do some research on your own to find spots. In addition to that, Fishing is about the process! It is way more rewarding to struggle and make decisions to eventually catch fish than get a handout!
If you are looking for a resource to learn all the information you need to start catching fish our Zero To Hero Masterclass will detail everything you need to become an angler who catches quality fish on every outing.