A fish landing net serves several purposes, and comes in a variety of sizes. These fishing nets enable the angler to pick up a fish with out injury to the fish and without injury to the angler. They are available in sizes from the smallest minnow nets to the larger and common freshwater fish – such as pike and muskie. The use of nets also helps to bring more fish into the boat by removing the stress of lifting the fish out of the water by just the hook from the lure. The stress is also removed from the tip of the pole also reducing the risk of snapping the tip of the pole off. A fishing net also can be used to retrieve items from the water such as a floating marker, a hat that has blown off or a piece of paper or trash that goes floating by.
Net Repair After a Struggle
A good fish landing net will have a handle that is strong enough to not bend under the strain of lifting the intended fish. Its net mesh will be small enough to not let the fish go through and not catch their fins and gills. Various materials are used to make the netting: nylon, rubber coated nylon and a thicker re-inforced rubber. The rubberized material is nice because it resists the hook from your lure from getting stuck in the net which can require additional time to remove. This rubberized material makes the net a bit heavier than nylon but I prefer it because of its ease of removing the fish and the lures.
Minnow Net / Floating Handle
The handle of most minnow nets are made from a metal similar in size to a metal hanger. These sometimes are painted. The loop or opening to catch the minnow is about the size of a tea cup on which is secured the net. This net is generally made of a fin messed nylon netting. They are perfect in size to dip into a minnow bucket and catch a minnow or two. Using this net is much easier than reaching your hand in to catch a fast darting minnow.
Small Dip Net
Dip Nets are often considered to be the next larger net from a minnow net. These are perfect size to bring in common fish caught in fresh water such as large and small mouth bass, white bass, crappie, and other pan fish. Their size allows you to carry on your belt, or attached to your tackle box when fishing from shore. In addition these can be handy when wanting to remove several fish from a live well. These are in the range of 15-20 inches long with a net opening approximately 9 inches by 12 inches. These nets are usually made of a black nylon mesh. The dip nets used around live wells are usually made from metal - wooden dip nets will show nicks and scratches from the edges of the live well.
This great net is perfect for fly fishing, or as a dip net. Features a bamboo frame and a net size of 15" x 7" opening with a 9 inch depth.
Small Mouth BassThese nets are similar in size to the dip net and are interchangeable. Wood is preferred for stream or bank fishing because they won't sink if dropped into the water. They can be hung from your fly fishing vest. Here are two pictures showing this net in action, one with a rainbow and one with a small mouth bass.
All of these nets are technically fish landing nets. To me the term fish landing net relates to the longer handles nets that anglers use from boats and vary In size from 3 feet to up to 10 feet long. The longer handles are often collapsible for convenient storage. The larger nets are often marketed with a specific species in mind such as this Muskie net or the Trough Net.
Larger Rubberized Fish Net
116 Inch handle, 36 Inch Net, Collapse and Fold
Here is 116 inch long handled, 36 inch by 36 inch net that can reach out to capture hold a large muskie, provided you have a good net man.
Proud Net Man and Nice WalleyeOk, so you have fought a good fight, your fish is now near the boat, you see the lure is hanging out of the mouth of the fish and only one hook is in its jaw. You are fearful that if you try to lift the fish it will spit the lure right back at you! Behind many a fine catch there are great stories. From that specific lure you used, to how long it took to bring in the catch. It is at this precise moment that you need a good Net Man! (Or Woman). Having a friend who is willing to help and will place the net in a position so you can lead the fish into the net will bring more fish into the boat. Here is a picture of a very Proud Net Man!