Trout tickling, flounder tramping, and noodling

Want to catch a fish but don’t have any equipment? Try tickling, tramping, or noodling them.

Catfish
Engbretson, Eric / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Trout tickling: rubbing the underbelly of a trout to put it into a kind of hypnotic trance. Once it is immobile, you can just grab it and lift it up without too much of a struggle. This technique has a long history: the ancient Greeks, Shakespeare, Mark Twain, Roald Dahl, and Terry Pratchett all wrote about it.

Flounder trampling: there’s not much more to this technique than the name. Find a flounder in the water and step on it. They used to hold a world championship in Scotland, until they stopped.

Noodling: you may have heard of this one already, but if you haven’t, strap in! In the southern parts of the United States you can fish for catfish by finding their nests (holes? burrows? lairs? caves?) and sticking your hand into the entrance. The catfish latches onto your arm, you grab their insides, and then you pull the whole fish up out of the water. And hope that you don’t lose a finger in the process, or find an alligator or snapping turtle instead.

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