Fish traps are all pretty similar in theory. Each one has a holding space and an entrance usually equipped with some sort of barbs or other form of exiting resistance. A fish will enter the trap at the entrance hole. This point becomes narrower and narrower until the fish must squeeze through the opening into the holding space. After the fish enters the trap it will be unable to escape because it is one thing to swim past the barbs, but another thing entirely to swim against it. It is trapped.

I like this design because it is easy to carry, super cheap and easy, has a large holding space, and the lid is interchangeable depending on the fish you are after (i.e. catfish or crayfish).

Step 1: Parts and Tools

This is what I used to make the bucket trap; it is by no means an absolutely necessary list of materials. Feel free to shake things up. Don't have a drill? Use a nail and a hammer, you get the idea. All of these things can be found at your local hardware store, and are very cheap. You shouldn't have to spend more than $5 - $10 for this project.



  • drill with 1/4" Drill Bit
  • Wire snips
  • dremel and cutting wheel
<p>The &quot;barbs&quot; may help some but the essence of how they work is that the fish swim near and peck around the bucket being attracted by the bait. With a 9.5&quot; Dia. opening at the mouth which is 70 sq. in. opening vs. a 1.5&quot; Dia (for example) at the other end being roughly 1.75 sq. in. Making it 40 times more likely to find their way in than their way out. </p>
<p>I made 15 of those with slightly smaller wire for the cone 40 years ago and caught more prawns than I could eat. I think it was Edmund Burke who said, &quot;Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it.&quot; Looks like he was right!</p>
Whe i was a kid my dad bought me a trap with the same idea but was made out of tree roots. Some indians in Mexico made it for him. It worked.. i had to fill it with rocks to anchor it.
<p>A lot of &quot;stolen&quot; traps (or pots if crabbing or shrimping) are due to current. There is a lot of surface area on a bucket style trap and even a small current can provide a lot of force. You mention it in your 'ible to weight your trap, but I cannot emphasize this enough. Make sure it is weighted. Rocks lose a lot of apparent weight when underwater. Use rebar or lead diving weights instead.</p>
<p>Thanks for the tip.</p>
<p>Nice 'ible! </p><p>Only suggestion I have it to move the zip ties from the tools list to the parts list.</p>
<p>Good catch!</p>
<p>The big question is . . .</p><p>Did it work? :)</p>
Stay tuned, I made it and set it this morning. I will check it tomorrow morning.
I like the design, but I'm wondering how the fish is supposed to fit in the trap space, looks like the wire cone takes up all the trap room swimming space??
<p>This concept is widely used in Asia. In the Philippines, I think it is called a baklad. It is made of bamboo strips.</p>
Copy Gilo, I understand the design, I made a crawdad trap with double cones and there was plenty of room for the crawdads to gather in the trap space. However, from the photos, this particular design doesn't look like it will allow a very big fish to get into the bucket. Perhaps a cut away illustration with internal dimensions would make it more clear? Anyway, let's see how this works for Spliffy!??
<p>Very nice fishing trap, use the funnel trap all the time!</p>
Looks good. <br>I need a small version of the trap. Something I could use to trap tiny cichlids in my aquarium. I need to reduce the aquarium population and give some of them away. They are about an inch and a half long.
<p>Couldn't you use some paracord for an anchor rope, staked to the shore?</p>
Maybe a lot of holes in the bottom of the bucket that are small enough to prevent bait from escaping, but big enough to reduce the force of flowing exerted on the bucket.

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