"Stardew Valley" Fishing Guide

Updated on August 5, 2019
Heather Lengel profile image

Heather has a passion for writing and drawing, and maybe a slight addiction to anime and video games.

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Fish Are Friends

The fishing mechanic in Stardew Valley may seem extremely difficult when you first get started. However do not be turned off by your initial inability to catch anything but algae! It only makes sense that a novice would struggle with any new task right? This gets incredibly easier with gear that is unlocked by obtaining higher levels.

If you've lost your Fishing Rod, you can obtain another at the Fishing Shack south of the beach on the docks. This is also where you can buy bait and upgraded rods as you level. The NPC who runs it, Willy, will also sell you Trout Soup when you're a beginner. I highly suggest buying some unless you can make it yourself as it will help you not only to catch those incredibly difficult fish, but increase your Fishing Skill quickly.

Fishing Rods

There are 3 Fishing Rods in the game, Bamboo Fishing Rod, Fiberglass Fishing Rod, and Iridium Fishing Rod. You will start out with Bamboo, unlock Fiberglass at Fishing Level 2, and Iridium at Fishing Level 6. Fiberglass allows you to use bait, and Iridium will allow you to use bait and tackle. Rarer fish will require better rods and attachments.

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Fishing Levels

Catching fish in general gains you experience, as does selling the fish. Here's a list of the ranks and rewards!

Rank
Reward
1
No Rewards
2
Unlocks Bait and Fiberglass Fishing Rod
3
Unlocks Crab Pot, Dish O' The Sea
4
Unlocks Recycling Machine
5
Unlocks Professions: Choose Fisher or Trapper
6
Unlocks Spinner, Trap Bobber, Iridium Fishing Rod
7
Unlocks Cork Bobber, Treasure Hunter
8
Unlocks Barbed Hook, Dressed Spinner, Worm Bin
9
Unlocks Magnet
10
Unlocks Professions: Angler, Lure Master, Mariner, Pirate

Tackle/Attachments

Name
Use
Crafting Requirements
Barbed Hook
Makes it easier to catch lower ranked Fish
1 Copper Bar, 1 Iron Bar, 1 Gold Bar
Cork Bobber
Increases the length of the Fishing Bar
10 Wood, 5 Hardwood, 10 Slime
Dressed Spinner
Improves Catch Rate
2 Iron Bars, 1 Cloth
Lead Bobber
Additional Weight, keeps bobber steadier.
Must be Purchased
Magnet
Increases chance of Treasure
1 Iron Bar
Spinner
Improves Catch Rate
2 Iron Bar
Trap Bobber
Decreases Fish Escape Rate
1 Copper Bar
Treasure Hunter
Increases chance of Treasure, prevents fish from escaping while capturing Treasure
2 Gold Bar
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Bubbles?!

Sometimes while running around you'll notice bubbles in the water. Bubbles are awesome, because they make it much more likely to catch fish more quickly without the Bait or Fishing Food Buff. They also give you a better chance at catching rare fish. So if you're seeking a Legendary Fish, these are a good free boost to your chances.

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Fish Tank Bundles

Fish Tank Bundles are bundles of specific fish you can turn into the Junimos at the community center to progress further in the game and removes the Glittering Boulder. However I should note, you may not be able to complete the Specialty Fish Bundle without fully unlocking The Vault first, unless you can find a Sandfish (only found in The Desert) for sale at the Traveling Cart. If you haven't unlocked the Fish Tank yet, start with completing some of the other Bundles already available such as the Foraging, or Pantry Bundles.

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River Fish Bundle

Fish
Season
Location/Weather/Rod
Catfish
Spring, Fall
Rivers and Secret Woods Pond. Raining
Sunfish
Spring, Summer
6AM-7PM During Sunny Weather, Riverlands Farm or Wilderness Farm during Rainy Weather
Shad
Spring, Summer, Fall
Rivers. 9AM-2AM. Raining, Fiberglass Rod
Tiger Trout
Fall, Winter
Rivers. 6AM-7PM, Fiberglass Rod
Reward for Completion: Bait x(30)
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Ocean Fish Bundle

Fish
Seasons
Locations/Weather/Rod
Red Snapper
Summer, Fall
Ocean, 6AM-7PM, during rain.
Sardine
Spring, Fall, Winter
Ocean, 6AM-7PM.
Tuna
Summer, Winter
Ocean, 6AM-7PM.
Tilapia
Summer, Fall
Ocean, 6AM-2PM, Fiberglass Rod
Reward for Completion: Ward Totem: Beach x(5)
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Lake Fish Bundle

Fish
Season
Location/Weather/Rod
Bullhead
All
Mountain Lake, always available.
Sturgeon
Summer, Winter
Mountain Lake, 6AM-7PM
Largemouth Bass
All
Mountain Lake, 6AM-7PM
Carp
All
At Mountain Lake, Secret Woods, and Sewer all seasons. Cindersap Forest Pond Spring, Summer, Fall. Always available.
Reward for Completion: Dressed Spinner
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Night Fish Bundle

Fish
Seasons
Location/Weather/Rod
Bream
All
Rivers, 6PM-2AM
Eel
Spring, Fall
Ocean, 4PM-2AM, during rain, Fiberglass Rod
Walleye
Fall
Rivers, Lakes, Forest Pond, 12PM-2AM, during rain, Fiberglass Rod
Reward for Completion: Small Glow Ring
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Crab Pots

Crab Pots are available at Level 3 Fishing Skill to either buy from the fishing store, or you can craft them yourself using 40 logs and 3 silver ingots. Most of the fish needed for the Crab Pot Bundle will require using these, although others can be foraged at the Beach. Another exception is Crab, which drops from Rock Crabs or Lava Crabs in The Mines as well.

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Crab Pot Bundle

Fish
Location
Cockle
Ocean, Beach (forage)
Shrimp
Ocean
Periwinkle
Freshwater
Oyster
Ocean, Beach (forage)
Clam
Ocean, Beach (forage)
Snail
Freshwater
Mussel
Ocean, Beach (forage)
Crab
Ocean, Rock Crabs or Lava Crabs (Mines)
Lobster
Ocean
Crayfish
Freshwater
Reward for Completion: Crab Pot x(3)
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Specialty Fish Bundle

Fish
Seasons
Location/Weather
Sandfish
All
The Desert pond, 6AM-8PM.
Ghostfish
All
The Mines Level 20 and level 60 ponds. Also dropped by ghosts.
Woodskip
All
Secret Woods, Forest Farm.
Pufferfish
Summer
Ocean, 12PM-4PM, sunny.
Reward for Completion: Dish 'O The Sea x(5)

More Fish?

There are other fish than what are needed for the Fish Tank Bundles. They can be used in recipes and of course sold for profit. Not to mention there are Legendary Fish that are worth some serious money!

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Other Fish

Fish
Season
Location/Weather
Albacore
Fall, Winter
Ocean, 6AM-11AM, 6PM-2AM
Anchovy
Spring, Fall
Ocean
Dorado
Summer
River, 6AM-7PM
Halibut
Spring, Summer, Winter
Ocean, 6AM-11AM, 7PM-2AM
Herring
Spring, Winter
Ocean
Ice Pip
All
The Mines floor 60
Lava Eel
All
The Mines floor 100
Lingcod
Winter
Lake, River
Octopus
Summer
Ocean, 6AM-1PM
Perch
Winter
Lake, River
Pike
Summer, Winter
Lake, River
Rainbow Trout
Summer
River, Mountain, 6AM-7PM, Sunny
Red Mullet
Summer, Winter
Ocean, 6AM-7PM
Salmon
Fall
River, 6AM-7PM
Scorpion Carp
All
Desert, 6AM-10PM
Sea Cucumber
Fall, Winter
Ocean, 6AM-7PM
Smallmouth Bass
Spring, Fall
River, Lake, Forest, Pond
Squid
Winter
Ocean, Night
Stonefish
All
The Mines floor 20
Super Cucumber
Summer, Fall, Winter
Ocean, 6PM-2PM
Albacore, Red Mullet, and Squid Require Fiberglass Rod. Lingcod Requires Iridium Rod.

Legendary Fish

Fish
Seasons
Locations/Weather
Angler
Fall
North of Joja Mart
Glacierfish
Winter
South of Arrowhead Island, Deepwater, 6AM-10PM
Crimsonfish
Summer
East Pier of Ocean
Legend
Any
Mine Lake (log)
Mutant Carp
Any
Sewers
All Legendary Fish Require Iridium Rod.

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