Putting Together A Fishing Kit

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Fancy taking up fishing? Here’s what your starter kit should contain, plus some of the best lures to make sure you get those fish out of the water.
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Fishing is one of those hobbies that quickly get people hooked (sorry!). There are several reasons it’s so popular. One is that it’s as sociable as you want to make it. You can take a peaceful fishing trip solo, or bring along a big group of family and friends. It’s also a great stress-buster that gets you away from the noise and drama of everyday life. And one of the great things about it is that it’s relatively cheap – as a beginner, you can get yourself set up without too much outlay.
 
The first thing to think about is what kind of fishing you want to do. Are you looking to try sea fishing? Or would you rather go fly fishing for trout, salmon or carp (in which case, you’ll need a licence)? You’ll need to know what kind of fish you’re planning to target. And – of course – you’ll need to think about how much you’re willing to spend.
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You can buy a fishing-rod licence from the Environment Agency. This is straightforward enough and will allow you to fish for salmon, trout, freshwater fish, smelt and eel with a rod and line. You can expect to pay £27 a year, or £72 for salmon and sea trout. Once that’s in place, you can get onto the fun bit, which is buying your kit. 
 
The easiest way to do this is to buy a complete starter kit on eBay. This will include a fishing rod and fishing reel, as well as all the necessary extras like waggler floats, non-toxic shot, hooks, a bait box, disgorgers and plummets. If you’re wondering what on earth all this stuff is, here’s what you need to know about fishing tackle.
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Fishing rod
When it comes to choosing a fishing rod, you’ll need to consider what you want to fish for and where you’re going to do it. One option is to call a tackle shop and ask what they recommend, or speak to friends. And if you’re not yet sure what kind of fishing you want to do, you can always plump for a 6-7 foot, medium to medium light, 2-piece graphite rod. 

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Waggler floats
A waggler is a float that’s cast on a rod and line. These are a popular choice for coarse fishing, because they’re sensitive and allow you to adjust the depth. 
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Hooks
Go for quality fishing hooks in a range of sizes.

Fishing shot
Fishing shot must be non-toxic by law, so it doesn’t harm swans and other birdlife, who might accidentally swallow it. 
 
Disgorgers
You’ll need these to help you release deeply hooked fish.
 
Plummets
These are another are a crucial piece of kit that will help you find the depth of your chosen pond or reservoir.
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Once you’ve got all the fishing equipment, you’ll need some bait to attract those fish. What you’ll use again depends on where you’re fishing and what you’re trying to catch. If you’re sea fishing for cod, for instance, you’ll want to use peeler crab, whereas crab like squid or even bacon.
 
You can also use fishing lures, which are artificial baits. Designed to look like small fish, they’re colourful and often move or vibrate to attract the fish’s attention. Most have a little hook, so you can catch the fish once it strikes. Some are made from plastic, others wood or even string. Either way, they’re better for the planet than conventional bait as they help prevent overfishing of smaller bait species.
 
These are some of the different types of lure: 
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Artificial flies
These pretty, brightly coloured fly fishing lures are used in rod and fly-fishing. A popular one is the Green Highlander, which is used to catch salmon. 
 
Surface lures
Also called poppers, stickbairs and top water lures, these float on the water’s surface. Some even make a noise to attract the fish. 
 
Swimbait
This is plastic bait designed to look like a small fish. Some come with tails that make them look like they’re swimming through the water.
 
With such a huge choice available, it can be confusing at first. The best thing to do is just get out there and see what works for you.
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