Friendly Fishing

Do you Like to Fish?

Fishing is a great summer activity – you can fish off your dock or from your boat…but do you know how fish breathe or where they like to live or what they eat? Here is some information to help you learn a bit more about those fish you like to catch!

Fish need clean, healthy places to live (called “habitats”) where they can find good food, shelter and places to lay their eggs and make more fish. A good place for fish to live is a place that has:


Like all animals fish must eat. The type of food an area can provide for fish depends on both the type of river or lake bottom, and the type of land along the shoreline. Different areas will attract different fish.


Fish need places to hide from the bigger fish and birds (that want to eat them).They also need places to rest if the water is flowing fast. Fish will find shelter behind rocks, around drowned logs and branches, in and around plants or in deep areas in a lake.

Migration routes

Fish often travel a great distance between where they live, eat, and lay their eggs. Fish must be able to swim through all the areas in between if they are to get to where they need to go – this is called their “migration route”.

Places to reproduce (have baby fish!)

Most fish are very picky about where they will lay their eggs and raise their babies (called “reproducing” or “spawning”). They will only reproduce if they can find the right type of lake or river bottom (e.g. rocks, sand, pebbles, etc.) and the right water quality. Different fish like different habitats…for example, walleye like clean gravel to spawn in; northern pike like shallow, weedy bays and lake trout like to spawn in and around large boulders.

Water quality

Most fish species will do best in water that is a particular temperature – not too hot or too cold.,.but just right! They are also sensitive to pollution in the water. All things must be perfect in their neighbourhood or they will not be able to live there.