As you might guess from their name, bait fish are indeed used as a bait to make catching larger predatory fish such as game fish easier. Examples of bait fish include ballyhoo, flying fish, or the minnow for those fishing in freshwater.
If you know anything about bait fish, you may be wondering how they differ from forage fish. “Bait fish” is not necessarily an official term, as it is one used by recreational fishermen to refer to the various species of fish used as bait by humans to attract other fish. Fisheries prefer to use the term “forage fish” and it refers to the small fish that are preyed on by other species besides fish, such as seabirds or marine mammals.
An easy way to attract bait fish is via scent or using a light, which will grab the attention of zooplankton, a preferred bait fish meal. Speaking of attraction, it’s considered dangerous to swim around bait fish as these fish may attract large predators like sharks.
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