Eel Fishing Tips - How to Fish for Eels

Eels are denizens of the mud; but they are fond of clean not foul mud, and ought never to be sought after in filthy places. There are many modes of taking them: by rod and line, by dead line, by sniggling, by bobbing, and by spearing.
When a rod is used, you should put a brandling or red-worm on a No. 8 hook; the bait should touch the bottom; and, when you have a “bite,” the float should be drawn quite under water before you strike.
Eel
The dead line is a line of whipcord, with hooks about two feet asunder, baited with lob-worms or small fish, and having a weight at the end.
You should also have a bank-runner—a reel on a pin or stake stuck into the ground on the edge of the bank; the line and baits should be thrown in, and left for the eels to amuse themselves with,—looked to, and drawn up at your leisure.
In sniggling, a lob-worm is put upon a stout worsted needle; the line is on a winder; and the fish will be found near flood-gates, wharfings, bridges, piles, holes in the banks of rivers, ponds, and canals.
The bait should be put into the lurking-places of the eel, by means of a stick with a forked head; and when the bait is taken, which will easily be known by the pull of the string, strike.

Bobbing for eels.

In this process long red-worms are strung on threads of worsted, until a bunch as large as the two fists is formed around a piece of lead. The whole is sunk to the bottom, or nearly so, then raised a little, then depressed, so as to induce the eels to bite.
When this occurs, heave up without hurry.
The number of eels taken in this way is often prodigious.

In spearing eels, the spearer usually goes into the mud in a pair of pants or mud pattens, pieces of square board fastened into the heel to prevent sinking.
He takes an eel-spear in his hand, something like Neptune’s trident, and progs the mud all over, and the eels are caught between the forked blades of the spear.
Great numbers of eels are taken in this way on the muddy ooze of salt or fresh-water rivers.

Excerpt from the book:
EVERY BOY’S BOOK: A COMPLETE ENCYCLOP├ćDIA OF SPORTS AND AMUSEMENTS.
EDITED BY EDMUND ROUTLEDGE.
With more than Six Hundred Illustrations
FROM ORIGINAL DESIGNS.
LONDON: GEORGE ROUTLEDGE AND SONS,
THE BROADWAY, LUDGATE.
NEW YORK: 416, BROOME STREET.
1869.
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