There are three approaches to catching fish - irrespective of the type of fishing you are doing:
This is where you fish with man-made objects, which are designed to entice fish to ‘take' and may or may not represent food that fish eat. The lure may require a specialised presentation to replicate a source of food, like an insect, as used for example in fly fishing. Techniques which involve using lures include spinning, plugging, trolling (by boat) and fly fishing.
The second way anglers catch fish is by using ‘natural baits'. This is where a common prey species of the fish as an attractant. The natural bait used may be alive or dead and common natural baits include worms, maggots, juvenile fish and prawns. Natural baits work because they are lifelike in texture, odour and colour. Techniques which involve using natural baits include ledgering and float fishing.
The third way to catch fish is by using ‘artificial baits' which includes baits such as bread, sweetcorn and boilies (boiled paste made of mixing fishmeal, milk proteins, bird foods etc.). These baits are most commonly used when coarse fishing and work by attracting fish due to their odour and/or colour. Techniques which involve using artificial baits include ledgering and float fishing.