Catching saithe: habitat, lures and methods of catching fish

Saithe is one of the many species of fish in the cod family. A popular object of amateur and commercial fishing in the North Atlantic. Medium sized fish. It can grow up to 1.2 m and weigh more than 20 kg. It has a valky body, characteristic of most cod-like fish. The chin barbel is rather short. The mouth is medium, in contrast to the bottom cod, with a characteristic lower mouth. The back is olive green or steel in color, the belly is whitish. Caudal fin and pronounced notch. Saithe is an active schooling predator, feeding on young herring, herring, and more. Bottom-pelargic fish living at depths up to 250 m. The fish tends to the shelf zone and, despite the pelargic way of life, does not go far into the sea. During the pursuit of prey, it can rise to higher layers of water. Another representative of codfish is similar to saithe – lure or pollack, but it does not have a chin barbel and is much smaller. Lures live in the waters of Northern Norway up to the Bay of Biscay. Unlike other cod species, which prefer near-bottom layers of water with a high salt concentration, saithe can also enter the desalinated areas of the northern seas, and catches in the Baltic Sea are not uncommon. Sides are characterized by active migrations. Industrial mining is very active. The nutritional value is very high. It is worth noting that fakes of canned salmon are most often made from saithe, tinting the meat to the desired shade.

Fishing methods

Very often, amateur fishing on saithe, along with cod, occurs during fishing tours in the North Atlantic. Fishing is carried out almost all year round. It is caught on a par with cod, but saithe meat is valued higher. The main method is fishing “in a plumb line”. Under certain conditions, for example, when fishing in the fjords, saithe can be caught on spinning “cast” or “donks” both from the shore and from a boat.

Catching saithe on a spinning rod

The most interesting and successful way of fishing for haddock is sheer lure. Fishing takes place from boats and boats of various classes. As for catching other cod fish, anglers use marine spinning tackle to fish saithe. For all gear, in spinning fishing for sea fish, as in the case of trolling, the main requirement is reliability. Reels should be with an impressive supply of fishing line or cord. In addition to a trouble-free braking system, the coil must be protected from salt water. Spinning fishing from a vessel may differ in the principles of bait supply. In many cases, fishing can take place at great depths, which means that it becomes necessary to exhaust the line for a long time, which requires certain physical efforts on the part of the fisherman and increased requirements for the strength of tackle and reels, in particular. According to the principle of operation, the coils can be both multiplier and inertial-free. Accordingly, the rods are selected depending on the reel system. When fishing with spinning marine fish, fishing technique is very important. To select the correct wiring, you should consult experienced local anglers or guides. Saithe forms large clusters, with active biting, experienced anglers and guides do not recommend using multi-hook tackle. When biting several fish at the same time, fishing can turn into a difficult, hard job. Very large individuals are rarely caught, but the fish have to be raised from considerable depths, which creates great physical exertion when playing prey. The use of rigs for natural baits (“dead fish” or cuttings) is also quite relevant.


In most cases, when fishing on saithe, various vertical spinners and jigs are used. Fish can bite at different depths and the use of such rigs can be considered the most versatile. In general, saithe fishing is different in that this fish, unlike most cod fish, can be found at different depths. As already mentioned, it is quite justified to use various lures for spinning “casting” and slicing fish and shellfish meat, when fishing with specialized equipment. Shellfish are most preferred when fishing from the shore using the “donkey” method.

Places of fishing and habitat

Saithe are prone to migration, there are cases of catching this fish off the coast of Spain and in the Baltic Sea. In spring it migrates to the north, in autumn to the south. Off the Russian coast, fish appear in the summer. The main habitat of the saithe is the waters of the North Atlantic. It can be caught off the coast of North America, Northern Europe, Iceland, the Faroe Islands and in the Barents Sea. Catching saithe is very important off the coast of the Kola Peninsula and Novaya Zemlya.


The spawning period for saithe may vary depending on the region. In general, it can be described as winter-spring. Spawning occurs in the lower, most saline layers of water. The caviar is near-bottom-pelargic, the larvae quickly switch to animal feeding on crustaceans and caviar, and gradually the young pollock begins to feed on smaller fish.

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