Police officers bait people in tickets

Anyone looking for fishing information on the web will quickly find it. Thousands upon thousands of pages deal with all aspects of fishing. But what does the inclined non-fisherman do? Just. We have opened a collection of questions here that we have been asked several times.

In which waters of the FV Mittelrheintal can I fish WITHOUT a patent?
In none.

What types of patents are there?
There are day, monthly and annual tickets (annual tickets for active fishermen and young fishermen).

I (as an adult) want to try fishing, what should I do?
In all waters of the FV Mittelrheintal you need a patent (also called a “brand” or “card”). If you just want to try out whether you like fishing, you could buy a day or monthly ticket. However, these cards are not exactly cheap (see Brands & Patents). In addition, the Old Rhine is not an easy-to-fish body of water. So it is not enough to hang some kind of bait in the water with any hook. Even experienced and well-equipped fishermen often return home empty-handed. We are of course happy about the income and depend on it. But if you are completely inexperienced and just want to try a little, you better go to Lake Constance (there is the so-called free fishing right), or to a breeding pond like the Güfel in Meinigen. (Incidentally, it doesn't hurt to knot a few leaders for exercise in case a hook breaks, or to have a fisherman show you a few tricks.)

How do you get an annual pass at the FV Mittelrheintal?
There are two basic requirements for this:
First, you have to live in the catchment area. The catchment area includes the communities of Diepoldsau, Widnau, Au, Heerbrugg, Berneck, Balgach, Rebstein, Kriessern or Marbach.People who live outside the above-mentioned catchment area (so-called guest fishermen) are generally refused.
Second, you have to be in possession of a «SaNa» (certificate of competence). Then you fill out the registration form and send it together with a copy of the SaNa, the ID (or passport) and two passport photos to the address given on the form. At the next committee meeting it will be decided whether the applicant can become a member and obtain an annual ticket.

What is a SaNa?
Proof of competence is mandatory for everyone who wants to purchase a monthly or annual pass. The point is that anglers should not be unsuspectingly let loose on the animals and, in addition to being careful with the fish, also know something about the ecology, equipment and legal framework. So not a bad thing, and if you take the time not only to read through the documentation, but also to learn a little, you will surely pass the test. In no case can knowledge damage it. More information about SaNa can be found here.

What does fishing equipment cost?
A sensible fishing rod with reel and line ("Silch") is available from around 150 francs. In this sense, sensible means: You can fish with it without any problems, can withstand a larger specimen and, if used properly (not fencing!), You can enjoy it for years.
Then there are landing nets, blackjack and some small items for around 50 francs. Some things are in the household anyway, such as a sharp knife, small scissors, a tape measure or pliers. Experience has shown that over time, more and more pieces of equipment come together, which of course costs money. But you can really start without any problems with simple and inexpensive equipment.

Why even a pair of pliers?
Pliers are used to remove barbs. Barbs are forbidden in most of the waters of the FVM (except parts of the Old Rhine) - multiple hooks may generally only be used without barbs. You also need the pliers to clamp on shot lead or to do handicrafts. Sometimes a carabiner has to be snapped off a swivel, sometimes something is jammed ... you only notice that you need it when it's gone.

My son would like to fish regularly
From the age of 12 (i.e. after the 11th birthday) a child (let's be honest: a boy) can join the youth fishermen. The youth fishermen meet on several occasions per year (see Jufi program) and learn from experienced fishermen fishing techniques, but also rules of conduct on the water or how fish are processed. To do this, he must have completed the SaNa and can then contact our youth warden. There he can get a youth fishing permit for CHF 55 per year, with which he can fish the Old Rhine and the Rietaach.

Why can you only become a juvenile fisherman from the age of 12?
The young fishermen usually go on tour unaccompanied. The Old Rhine may seem like a good-natured pond, but shouldn't be underestimated. Slippery bank areas, in places still undermined, and trees and rocks under the water surface can be a real danger.
In addition, a certain degree of maturity is required to understand how to deal with sensitive animals.

Why do fishermen often wear sunglasses when the sun isn't shining?
That usually has little to do with the sun: it is more about the polarized lenses. With «polar glasses» you can largely hide the reflection of the water and you can see into the waterinto it instead of just the reflection on the surface! A fine thing, even if it looks a bit “special” in the right weather.

What is so special about fishing?
Besides being in the fresh air? Except that you can observe nature in a paradisiacal environment? Or that you sometimes meet like-minded people for a short chat?
It's about balance: from the moment the bait is in the water, it gets exciting. A fish can bite into it at any second! At the same time, you know exactly that you need patience. Much patience. You have time for yourself, you drive down, you can let your thoughts drift. You can fiddle around with problems, daydream or just switch off. You get "back on track".

Another aspect: fishing satisfies the hunting instinct. Many anglers go hunting for mushrooms with the same passion. There we have him, the hunter-gatherer. (Have you seen the women who march through the village with ski sticks? Often they just lean on the sticks. But what they have in common: they band together and babble. All that's missing is the campfire and a swarm of children: Also Women are not immune to their old legacy!)
Many anglers (like the scribe here) catch a fish sporadically. But it's not so much about the fish. It's about fishing itself. But if one takes a bite, the joy is all the greater. If you urgently need fish, it's better to buy one. Better safe than sorry.

I can't understand what is funny about killing fish.
In fact, one hears and reads this stupid saying that fishermen want to kill quite often. Anyone who thinks killing the fish is fun should get a professional to look into their pear when the opportunity arises. Killing is by no means “fun”, but it is a necessity. Frying the fish alive would be barbaric.
Otherwise see"But you have to kill the fish ...":

But you have to kill the fish and that is cruelty to animals!
Yes, the fish are killed. From anglers. But more often from predatory fish. Or herons or cormorants or geese swifts. Or injured so badly by them that they later die from it (bleeding to death, fungal attack).

The injuries to this trout (caught on the inland canal / Image: Atanas Golubov) can only have been caused by a bird. Injuries caused by predatory fish are larger and not as deep. The trout would have died in agony from this massive injury.

By the way: ALL predatory fish are cannibals, they eat their conspecifics and also their brood. A pike does not chew its prey: it grabs it, turns it so that the prey's head looks towards the stomach and then it is choked down. In addition to the long, pointed fangs, hundreds of rearward-facing teeth that grow out of the palate help him. The prey then suffocates - perforated as it is now - in the pike's stomach acid. Life under water is not a pony farm.

We did not mess around and created a highly scientific illustration:

The pike and its jaws.

And while we're in the process of making the pike lousy: They also eat ducklings. Bibeli. These can then be found in the stomachs of the pike in spring. (The pike is not a bad guy at all, it only has to serve as an example and is an example of all larger predatory fish. Like all fish, it has an important job, takes it seriously, and it has its permanent place in nature.)

An angler who knows what he is doing is sure to give the fish the most gracious of all deaths that fate has to offer: The fish is stunned with two or three strong blows on the bell, then a gill cut is made with a sharp knife and the fuzzy fish glides over the Jordan (this is also required by law). Since the fish does not have a skull, but a kind of chassis made of cartilage, it usually dies at the first wink, but the same applies here: Better safe than sorry.

Highly scientific illustration II:

Two to three blows to the head, with the subsequent gill incision, the cardiac artery is severed.

Which waters are fished by the FV Mittelrheintal?
Sections of the Old Rhine, the inland canal, the Rietaach and the Moosanger. We have created a waterway map for this purpose.

"And? Do they bite? "
Every fisherman knows this question, he hears it every hour on sunny days.

An angler gets through the day well with himself. People in constant need of company would be more likely to spend their free time in a pack. If you get only a grunt in response to this question, please leave the good man alone. He's not on the water because he's lonely.

Anyone who catches a more sociable specimen can then enjoy an hour-long monologue about fishing technique, his new fishing reel, major catches from the last 50 years, news from the fishing club and ecology in general. Risky business ...

What kinds of fish are there in the waters of the FV Middle Rhine Valley?
A wide range: bream, alet, barbel, roach, rudd, crucian carp, carp, eel, catfish, pike, pikeperch, truffle, bullhead, rainbow, brook and lake trout, char, grayling, perch, tench and some protected species such as Nose or bitterling. The animal world on the Old Rhine is very diverse. In addition to the fish and the obligatory squirrels, you can also watch hares, crabs, mussels, water snakes, a variety of water birds and countless insects when fishing. Beavers are also supposed to slowly settle in here again, but you can only recognize them by the puff they hold.

Those who take the time not only to stroll along the water but also to take a closer look will be richly rewarded.

Fishermen see themselves as conservationists. How do you get that with fishing under one roof?
As already mentioned, fishermen don't just stand by the water because of the fish. You are looking for peace and quiet, enjoy the idyll. And probably every fisherman gets bile when he sees that garbage or broken beer bottles have been carelessly left lying in the bushes. For this reason, we organize our bank cleaning every year together with the Widnau diving club. While the fishermen are cleaning up the banks, the divers are pulling the garbage out of the water. It's unbelievable what a mess it turns out!

There have been cases where fishermen rubbed someone on the spoon during “inflagranti littering” or pointed someone away (a question of temperament). The buses are draconian and pity is limited.

Fishermen observe the water in general. If something seems strange, for example two dead, big carp in the same stretch of water, they react. It starts with a call to the water operator, but it can also lead to a water sample being taken. Serious violations of common sense (e.g. leftovers from a party) are often reported directly to the police or municipal administration.

How do you fish?
In films you almost exclusively see fishing with a spigot (pose, float) so that every viewer knows straight away, "Aha, there is fishing". In practice, however, there are many more ways and systems of fishing. The website www.angelarten.de gives a good overview of the most important types of fishing. Dynamite fishing, also known from films, remains prohibited for the time being.

When can I fish?
From a technical point of view, you can always fish, unless the water is frozen over. There are certain legal restrictions. The inland canal and the Moosanger have certain closing times. There are also closure times for various types of fish (e.g. trout, pike). You can only fish at night during summer time. The details are given on the respective patents.

How can you determine which fish you want to catch?
This is mainly related to the bait. If, for example, the pike is closed, you shouldn't throw a spoon with a steel leader and claim that you are fishing for catfish. Because with such an assembly you would of course also be fishing for pike (both are big predatory fish).
If you want to fish perch, you will hardly achieve your goal with maize: You need worms rather than bait or small twisters or small spoons. You will not find a tench on the surface of the water, which rushes around to feed: So basic assembly with worms or maize, preferably at dusk. Chriesi love Alet (really!), Pike, on the other hand, find it gruesome, or at least funny, he prefers to eat Alet. So you adjust to the target fish with the fishing technique, the depth, the bait, the hook size, the time of day and some other parameters.

Some pictures to understand:

Spoon: Metal plate as bait, which is provided with a triple hook. (At the opposite end, slightly out of focus, you can see what is known as a vortex, which compensates for the spoon's turning movements. Otherwise, the line would become tangled in a ball when it is hauled in.) The metal plate (here made of copper) wobbles under water, reflects the light and sends it out small pressure waves that are perceived by fish. A pike that bites on it will mistake the spoon for a small fish.

Crackhead: The term comes from the English “to spin”: When the spinner is hauled in, the metal plate (in the photo the glittering part) is set in a quick turn. The spinner purrs through the water like a propeller, generating light reflections, pressure waves and a humming sound.

Wobbler: Artificial baits with hard bodies are called wobblers. They mostly imitate fish, although they don't always have to be as natural as possible. A good wobbler often costs around thirty francs.

Steel leader: The leader is the front part of the assembly to which the hook is attached. Because of the sharp teeth, a leader made of fine steel rope, which is called a steel leader, is used for large predatory fish. In the photo above you can see a spoon with a swivel. The vortex is the spherical particle. Then comes a carabiner that connects the spoon to the steel leader (the black “wire” across the picture). Then there is another vertebra on the right, to which a braided cord has been knotted. The line is the main line (about 100 m) that is led onto the fishing reel.


Twister are soft rubber baits that look quite abstract. The rubber can also be transparent, opaque and mixed with glitter. The twister is fitted with a hook that carries a jig head (jig hook). The jig hook takes care of the weight in order to achieve a certain throwing distance and so that the twister then sinks. The twister “waggles” and glitters when it is retrieved.

Rubber fish are related to the Twisters and differ mainly in that you usually miss them.

What kind of baits are used?
The most famous baits are certainly worms and bread. Both usually work fine. Corn, cheese, small (dead) fish, Frolic or Chriesi are also often used. There is also an unmanageable amount of artificial bait: twisters, spoons, spinners, wobblers, streamers, flies, nymphs, ... the range is growing (and becoming more confusing) from year to year. Most anglers shoot themselves at a few systems and stick with them when they succeed.

What does fly fishing mean?
When fly fishing, the bait is brought to the water with flowing / whipping movements using a special rod with a special line (heavy enough to be able to cast without additional weights, and at the same time foamed so that it floats). (In theory, at least. In practice, at the beginning, you put the stuff around your ears.) That requires skill and training. The bait is an artificial fly: a hook that has been prepared (decorated) so that the fish can mistake it for an insect or a small fish.
These “flies” are usually tied themselves.So you see squat guys with claws, as big as frying pans, tying individual hairs and tiny feathers onto the most fragile crochet. That is touching, but they are dead serious: tying flies is a science in itself, a challenge and half the fun!


This very beautiful artificial fly was tied and photographed by Colin Riach (his pictures of fishing in Scotland are definitely worth seeing!) The multitude of different materials that were used for this fly pattern is certainly also remarkable. If you imagine that a fly fisherman often carries hundreds of self-made artificial flies with him in his fly box, it becomes clear that such a fly box is a little treasure and at least represents an ideal asset.

"Calling Fly Fishing a hobby is like calling Brain Surgery a job."
- Paul Schullery

“The person who coined the saying“ You can't buy happiness ”has probably never bought a good fly rod."
- Reg Baird

"It's a tightrope walk whether you're fishing or standing on the bank like an idiot."
- Steven Wright

My husband wants to start fishing, what should I expect?
There are two possible scenarios: He comes back after two hours and mumbles something about "Langwiliga huarä Schiissdräck". Then everything is fine.

Scenario two: He comes home late in the evening with a sunburn on his neck and leaves in his sparse hair, grinning blissfully and mumbling something about "Huera schö gsii". Then it gets serious ...

He'll be spending more time in fishing stores first. It takes a lot of time. Getting a mortgage on the other hand is a breeze. He will fill the house with rods and reels. He will subscribe to the “Petri Heil” magazine. He may also fake an affair so that he can steal the water after work. His circle of friends will change.

Stay strong.

Can you really BE ABLE to fish?
Many non-fishermen believe that it is enough to pull a worm onto a hook and submerge it in the water. You can, but that will only lead to occasional accidental catches. Fishing takes skill and know-how. You can do a lot wrong.

A non-representative selection:

Wrong place
The waters are not full to the brim with fish. Where there are no fish, the best bait is of no use.

Wrong time
The pike hides on a bright summer day, it depends on discretion when hunting. The tench likes to eat at dusk.
The catfish only becomes really active at night. etc.

Wrong depth
The fish move at different depths depending on the season and the water temperature.

Wrong bait
Please refer"How can you determine ..."

Wrong behaviour
If you jump around on the bank in brightly colored clothing, we will entertain the fish at best.

Wrong technique
Usually begins with a worm being pulled onto the hook incorrectly. An assembly that doesn't work will literally lead to trouble. If the throwing technique does not fit, there is a gnush with the fishing line or the lovingly knotted assembly is thrown into a treetop. And these are only the first rookie mistakes. (The author is still struggling to get a working tenon assembly ...)

Wrong temperament
You don't go to the water for an hour (except for a few throws with a pike or fly rod) If nothing works, there is no point in throwing out larger and larger baits or rushing from one fishing spot to the next. Catches cannot be forced. (except with dynamite; still forbidden). Take your time, stay calm, enjoy after an unsuccessful day that you could have invested the time far more stupidly.

Wrong period partner
"But yeah, you have to be home by two, we have to post go!"
The death cry of many a beautiful fishing day and also many a half-beautiful relationship.

Wrong equipment
If the bait doesn't go with the hook, the hook doesn't go with the line and it doesn't fit the reel on the wrong rod anyway, it won't work.

Wrong character
A good fisherman will respect the laws, be careful with nature in general and fish in particular, and leave the fishing spot clean. In addition, maybe a helping of humor and serenity, if things don't work that out, and helpfulness towards beginners and other fishermen. It worksNot by kilograms and centimeters of the caught fish. (Except afterwards at the regulars 'table: The regulars' table of fishermen is an alien culture, its own habitat, unfathomable and boring for outsiders.)

False friends
Fishing partners who are jealous of every fish; Anglers who don't give you any tips or who want to help out with a lead / worm. Fortunately, very seldom here in the Rhine Valley.

... and whoever does everything right now needs a little bit of luck.