Are Salmon Eggs Good Fishing Bait? – Explained

Salmon eggs aren’t very good fishing bait. Incorporating them into your fishing won’t necessarily provide you with the results you may be hoping for. Salmon eggs are full of nutrients and attractions which many fish may feed on. However, it’s not quite that straightforward.

Fish eggs in general are a natural food source throughout lakes, rivers, and oceans. To get a better understanding of how it all works, we need to look at where salmon eggs are found and what they contain.

Where Are Salmon Eggs Found

Salmon eggs are also known as Roe. Females tend to search for a small stream of water with high levels of turbulence. This is referred to as the Redd zone and is the ideal spawning ground for salmon. Male salmon have a short window in which they fertilize these eggs.

When looking for salmon eggs, your best bet is to find them naturally in streams of fast-flowing fresh water.

Salmon eggs are often consumed by people all around the world and share the same nutritional value as the fish fillet. Fishermen over the years have learned the location of the best spawning areas to harvest salmon eggs. This makes them a lot easier to get your hands on if you do want to use them as bait.

Many large Supermarkets sell salmon eggs so finding them to use in your fishing is fairly easy.

Why Salmon Eggs Can Be Used As Bait

Salmon eggs, like all eggs, are small nutrient-filled balls, that have a distinct red colour. Often a good indication of when a salmon is going to spawn is when its belly adopts the same reddish colour. This is a result of its diet and its body’s way of preparing for spawning.

Salmon eggs are high in protein, vitamins, and minerals such as selenium, phosphorus, and vitamins A, B12, and D. This without a doubt does make salmon eggs attractive to many fish. However, they are not a staple diet for the majority of fish anglers are looking to catch.

This suggests that although they may attract fish if incorporated into angling. Although the likelihood of them being killer bait that triggers a multitude of bites is not as high.

A standard belief is, eggs are packed with the most nutrient-rich compounds which develop into a creature.

Fish That Eat salmon Eggs and Why?

As salmon eggs are definitely attractive to fish, it all depends on what fish are exposed to the bait. Fish such as carp and catfish will pretty much eat anything so may take a liking to salmon eggs.

In all honesty, the fish that eat the most salmon eggs are probably salmon, this is a strange concept but very common for many fish and animals around the world.

To make things easier here’s a table of some popular fish that would eat salmon eggs and where they are most common.

This should help you get a rough idea of where to expect what fish if you do decide to use salmon eggs within your angling.

Fish that eat salmon eggsWhere they are most common
Trout North America, Northern Asia, Europe
Carp Europe, USA, Canada, Asia
Catfish South America, Africa, Europe, Asia
Salmon North America, Iceland, Greenland, Europe, Russia
Steelhead USA
Bluegill USA, Mexico, Canida, Japan, South Africa

How Could Salmon Eggs be used as Bait?

When using Salmon eggs as bait there are a few things to remember. The first and most important is that salmon eggs will not work as hook bait. They are far too small and do not have the structural integrity to withstand multiple bites.

They may however be a useful tool to attract fish into your swim. Using the same basic principles as we do when fishing a method feeder or PVA bag could be applied to salmon eggs.

Let’s use carp as an example. Salmon eggs are an attractive bait. This means mixing them into your method feeder mix could be a great way to incorporate salmon eggs into your fishing.

Having tried out this technique for the sole purpose of answering this question it’s fair to say that we did experience a number of bites with the salmon eggs mixed into the bait. However, it’s clear that they do not make a noticeable difference.

Whether this is due to the fish not being used to this new bait or they just don’t find them as attractive as a maggot or a piece of maize. We will never know.

It does seem them fish egg-related products are increasing in popularity, especially among trout anglers, however, it may be some time before they become a regularly used bait by all.

How To Use Salmon Eggs In Your Fishing

Trout: When fishing for trout, feeding real salmon eggs onto the shank of your hook may work. However, there is a high risk that they will fall off and deteriorate. Using fake salmon eggs with a worm or maggot all threaded onto the hook itself is a more viable alternative.

Carp: Adding real salmon eggs into your feeder mix is one method that does catch carp. They do seem to be drawn to the eggs. However, they are not the best bait to use when looking for the maximum number of bites. Baiting up your swim with spod mixes and PVA bags and sticks including salmon eggs will also give you similar results.

Catfish: Catfish are some of the hardest-fighting fish. Yet will still take the smallest piece of sweetcorn. Using fake salmon eggs or adding salmon eggs into your chum mixture may work well. In all honesty with catfish they will quite literally go for anything so using real salmon on your hook or threaded on by a hair rig may work fine.

Salmon: Although salmon do eat their own eggs. Fly fishing and using live bait and lures are your best bet. Adding a few salmon eggs onto your rig, combined with other bits of bait is probably the way to go depending on how and where you’re fishing.

Steelhead: Like with salmon or brown trout adding the salmon eggs into your bait or as a hook bait will work. To increase your chances of catching as many steelheads combine your salmon eggs with your lure or live bait. Whether you’re fishing on the surface or along the bottom this principle does apply.


To summarise, I certainly wouldn’t say that salmon eggs alone are good bait for fishing. However its fair to say, they are a useful tool when combined with other attractive baits. It’s something different and worth a shot if you want to incorporate something new and different into your fishing.

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