A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z


- The degree of sourness of a usually water soluble substance. Acidity is measured in pH, with 7 being neutral and 2 being a strong acid.

Action - Measure of rod performance that describes the elapse time between flexion and return to straight configuration, ranges from slow to fast, with slow being the most amount of flexion. Also refers to the strength of the rod (light, meduim and heavy) with light being a limber rod and a heavy stout rod. The movement of a lure due to its built-in properties.

Active Fish - Fish that are feeding heavily and striking aggressively.

Adipose Fin - On some species the fatty fin located between the dorsal and tail fin.

Air Bladder - A tough walled gas filled sac in the upper part of the body cavity of many bony fishes just beneath the vertebral column; its principal function is to offset the weight of heavier tissue such as bone. In some fishes used for sound production or respiration.

Alewife - A food fish belonging to the herring family.

Algae - Simple plant organisms.

Alkalinity - Measure of the amount of acid neutralizing bases.

Alley - An opening between patches of emergent weeds; also the parallel space separating emergent weeds and the shoreline.

Ambloplites rupestris - Latin name for Rock Bass

Amp - Amperes - Measure of electrical current.

Amp Hour - Storage capacity measurement of a deep-cycle batter obtained by multiplying the current flow in amps by the hours that it's produced.

Anadromous - Fish that ascend rivers to spawn

Anal Fin - The median, unpaired, ventrally located fin that lies behind the anus, usually on the posterior half of the fish.

Angler - Person using pole or rod and reel to catch fish.

Angling - Usually refers to the recreational catching of fish by means of hook and line; sport fishing; game fishing.

Annelids - Members of the phylum Annelida, a group of worm-like invertebrates whose bodies consist of a series of rings or segments (e.g., earthworms, leeches).

Anti-reverse - System that prevents reels from spinning in reverse.

Artificial Baits - Lures or flies made of wood, plastic, metal, feathers, or similar inert material.

B top

- A tangle of line caused by spool overrun on a baitcasting reel. Also referred to as Professional Overrun or Spaghette.

Backwater - Shallow area off a river.

Bag Limit - Restriction in the number of fish that an angler may retain, generally on a per trip or daily basis.

Bail - Metal, semi-circular arm on an open-face spinning reel that engages the line after a cast.

Baitcasting - Fishing with a revolving-spool reel and baitcasting rod; reel mounted on topside of rod.

Baitfish - Small fish often eaten by predators.

Bar - Long ridge in a body of water.

Basic Needs - Refers to the three survival requirements of fish: reproduction, security, and food.

Bay - Major indentation in the shoreline of a lake or reservoir.

Benthic - Occurring at or near the bottom of a body of water.

Biology - The study of living things.

Biomass - The aggregate amount of living matter or a specific species within a specific habitat. The total number of a specific species in a specific habitat.

Black Bass - Term used to describe several types of bass; the most common being smallmouth, largemouth, and spotted bass.

Blank - The main component of a finished fishing rod, minus the guides and handle.

Blue Bird Skies - A term used to describe bright, sunny, blue sky conditions that often makes fishing tougher.

Brackish - Water of intermediate salinity between seawater and freshwater.

Break - Distinct variation in otherwise constant stretches of cover, structure, or bottom type.

Breakline - A line of abrupt change in depth, bottom type, or water clarity in the feature of otherwise uniform structure.

Brushline - The inside or the outside edge of a stretch of brush.

Bucketmouth - Largemouth Bass - A black bass, body green-shaded with a broad, continuous dark stripe along each side, belly white to yellowish, dorsal fin almost completely separated between spiny and soft portion and lower jaw extends past the gold-colored eye. Also called bigmouth bass, green trout, green bass.

Bullet Sinker - A cone shaped piece of lead, zinc or steel of varying weights that slides up and down the line.

Buzzbait - An artificial lure with propeller-style blades that stirs up the water surface upon retrieve; a type of topwater lure.

Buzzing - Retrieving spinnerbaits or buzzbaits along the surface so they splash water.

C top

- Catch and Release.

CPR - Catch, Photograph, Release.

Cabbage - Any of several species of weeds, located above the surface or underwater.

Caddis - An insect of the order Trichoptera, characterized by swept-back wings; also, an insect that goes through a complete metamophisis much like a butterfly.

Canal - A man made waterway used for navigation.

Canoe - A light, long, narrow boat with sharp ends and curved sides propelled by hand-driven paddles.

Carolina Rig - A deep-water assembly comprised of a heavy slip sinker, plastic bead, barrel swivel, 16-to 18-inch leader, hook, and soft-plastic bait such as a worm, lizard, or crawfish. Rigged weedless with the hook buried in the body of the bait, this combination is excellent for fishing ledges, points, sandbars, and humps.

Channel - The bed of a stream or river.

Chugger - Topwater plug with a dished-out (concave or "cupped") head designed to make a splash when pulled sharply.

Cisco - Any of several whitefishes found primarily in the Great Lakes region.

Clevis - The swivel device to which a spinner blade is attached and which allows the blade to rotate.

Cold Front - A weather condition accompanied by high, clear skies, and a sudden drop in temperature.

Contact Point - The deepest position on structure where a bass angler can first effectively present his lure to bass as they migrate from deep water.

Coontail - Submerged aquatic plant of the hornwort family typically found in hard water; charactreized by stiff, forked leaves.

Cosmic Clock - The sun's seasonal effect on water and weather conditions relating to barometric pressure, wind, and cloud cover.

Cove - An indentation along a shoreline.

Cover - Natural or manmade objects on the bottom of lakes, rivers, or impoundments, especially those that influence fish behavior. Examples include stick-ups, tree lines, stumps, rocks, logs, pilings, docks, and weed patches.

Crankbait - A plug with a lip that causes it to dive. The bigger the lip, the deeper it dives.

Creek - A natural stream of water usually small in size and often a tributary of a river.

Creel limit - The number of fish an angler can keep as set by local or state regulations.

D top

- Department of Enviromental Conservation.

DNR - Department of Natural Resources.

Depthfinder - A sonar device, either a flasher unit or LCR recorder, used to read the bottom structure, determine depth, and in some cases actually spot the fish; also called a fishfinder.

Dink - Bass not long enough to meet state fisheries regulations or tournament standards. Typically less than 14 inches.

Disgorger - Device for removing hooks deeply embedded in the throat of fish.

Dorsal Fin - A median fin along the back which is supported by rays. There may be two or more dorsal fins, in which case the most anterior one is designated the first.

Drag - The device on reels that puts pressure on the line as it plays out and prevents the line from breaking.

Drop-Off - A sudden increase in depth, associated with a flat, point, gulley washes, small creek channels, land points, and the general lay of the land.

E top

- Environmental Protection Agency.

Ecology - The branch of biology dealing with the relationship between organisms and their environment.

Emerger - An aquatic insect in the process of rising to the surface to become a flying adult.

Esox lucius - Latin name for Northern Pike

Esox masquinongy - Latin name for Muskellunge

Eutrophic - A classification of geologically "old" bodies of water with weed-choked, oxygen-poor water which can only support fish such as bullheads and carp.
Eyelets - The eyelets, line guides or rings on a rod through which fishing line is passed.

F top

- Fish and Wildlife Service.

Falldown (or Laydown) - A tree that has fallen into the water.

Fancast - A systematic series of casts to a specific area of water.

Farm Pond - Small manmade body of water.

Feeder Creek - A tributary that runs into a larger stream, lake or river.

Feeding Cycle - Certain regular intervals during which fish satisfy their appetites. Examples: Major or Minor Solunar periods; sunrise, sunset.

Filamentous Algae - Type of algae characterized by long chains of attached cells that give it a stringy feel and appearance.

Fillet - In fish, a slice of meat without bones, cut out for human consumption.

Finesse Fishing - An angling technique characterized by the use of light tackle - line, rods, reel and artificial baits (often tube worms, grubs, or other small-sized soft-plastic lures); often productive in clear, fairly uncluttered water.

Finfish - A term used to separate true fish from shellfish, crayfish, jellyfish, etc.

Fingerling - A young fish of about 10 cm length.

Fins - Folds of skin supported by cartilaginous tissue in elasmobranchs and by bony rays in bony fishes. Used for locomotion, display, and sometimes specialized functions such as fertilization.

Fish - Literally, a vertebrate (animal with a backbone) that has gills and lives in water, but generally used more broadly to include any harvestable animal living in water. Fishes refers to more than one type of fish; finfish refers to sharks, some rays and bony fishes, and scalefish refers to fish bearing scales

Fisherman - One who engages in fishing for sport or occupation.

Fishery - Term to describe the collective enterprise of taking fish, usually used in conjunction with reference to the species, gear or area involved

Fishfinder - A sonar device, either a flasher unit or LCR recorder, used to read the bottom structure, determine depth, and in some cases actually spot the fish; also called a Depth Finder.

Fishhook - A barbed or barbless hook used for catching fish.

Fish Ladder - A series of pools arranged like steps that fish utilize to move upstream over a dam.

Fish On! - A shout that indicates the angler has hooked a fish, as in "a fish is on the line"

Fishout - To exhaust the supply of fish in a body of water.

Fishway - A contrivance that allows fish to pass around a dam.

Flat - A bottom that does not change more than a couple feet in depth. The flat can be near the shore or far away from it. A topo map shows the contour lines very far apart.

Flipping - Basically a long-rod technique where a lure, such as a jig or worm, is dropped - rather than cast - into heavy cover at close range. Also called "Flippin'."

Flipping Stick - Heavy action fishing rod, 7 to 8 feet long, designed for bass fishing.

Floating (float fishing) - to transverse a river or stream by some type of watercraft while fishing, most commonly in a tube, raft, canoe, or kayak.

Floss - Material for tying flies.

Fly - A hand-tied artificial lure made of various material tied to a hook.

Fly Dope - A dressing that makes artificial flies water resistant so they float.

Fly Fishing - A method of fishing that utilizes an artificial fly, a long flexible rod, a reel, and line.

Fly Rod - A light springy rod used in fly fishing.

Flytier - One who makes his own artificial flies for fishing.

Forage - Something eaten; the act of eating.

Freshwater - In a broad sense 'freshwater' is used for all continental aquatic systems such as rivers and lakes. In a technical sense it refers to water with less than 0.5 grams per liter of total dissolved mineral salts.

Front - Weather system that causes changes in temperature, cloud cover, precipitation, wind and barometric pressure.

G top

- Any tools used to catch fish, such as hook and line, nets, traps, spears, etc.

Gear Ratio - Measure of a reels' retrieve speed; the number of times the spool revolves for each complete turn of the handle.

Gill - Respiratory organ of many aquatic animals; a filamentous outgrowth well supplied with blood vessels at which gas exchange between water and blood occurs.

Gill Arch - Bony or cartilaginous arches in the throat of fish to which the filaments and rakers of the gills are attached. Bony fish usually have four gill arches.

Gill Opening - An opening behind the head that connects the gill chamber to the exterior. Bony fishes have a single such opening on each side whereas cartilaginous fishes (sharks and rays) have five to seven. The gill opening of sharks and rays are called gill slits.

Glaciated - Subject to or borne (created) by previous glacial activity.

Grub - A short, plastic type of worm usually rigged with a weighted jig hook.

H top

- The natural environment where animals and plants live.

Hard Bottom - River bottoms composed of firm or hard material such as rock, sand, gravel, or clay.

Hawg - A slang term used to describe a very large bass.

Holding Area - Structure that habitually holds three to five catchable bass.

Holding Station - Place on lake where inactive fish spend most of their time.

Honey Hole - A slang term used to describe a specific hole or an area containing big fish and/or a high number of fish.

Hump - An underwater island that generally rises gradually. On a topographical (topo) map, a hump will be signified by contour lines that make a circle, oval, or other similar shape.

Hydrology (Hydrologic) - The science that deals with the distribution, properties, and circulation of water on land surface, in the soil, underlying rocks, and in the atmosphere.

I top

- International Game Fish Association

Ichthyology - The science dealing with the study of fish.

Inactive Fish - Bass that are in a non-feeding mood. Examples of typically inactive times: following a cold front; during a major weather change that causes a sudden rise or fall in water temperature, or when a lake level is abruptly lowered.

Internet - The most widely used international communications computer network. To get access to the Internet, you need a modem or a connection to a LAN with Internet access. "What does that have to do with fishing?" you ask. Simple, that's how you got here.

Isolated Structure - A possible holding spot for fish; examples include a single bush on a point; a midlake hump, or a large tree that has fallen into the water.

J top

- plugs that move with no built-in action of their own; any action comes from the fisherman's maneuvering the rod and line.

Jig - a hook with a leadhead that is usually dressed with hair, silicone, or plastic.
Jig 'n Pig - a jig supplemented with a pork rind trailer.

K top

- A portable boat styled after the Eskimo kayak with a small opening in the center and propelled with a double-bladed paddle.

- Any fish that conforms to a specific minimum length limit established by the state fisheries department.

Kentucky (Spotted) Bass
- A black bass with a patch of teeth on its tongue.

L top

Largemouth Bass - A black bass, body green-shaded with a broad, continuous dark stripe along each side, belly white to yellowish, dorsal fin almost completely separated between spiny and soft portion and lower jaw extends past the gold-colored eye. Also called bigmouth bass, Green Trout, Green Bass, Bucketmouth.

Larva - Refers to the subsurface stage of development of an aquatic insect.

Laydown (or Falldown) - A tree that has fallen into the water.

Ledge - A severe drop-off. One that is anywhere from 75 - 90 degrees in angle and lasts more than 20 vertical feet. On a topo map, the contour lines will look as if they are touching each other.

Lepomis macrochirus - Latin name for Bluegill

Light Intensity - The amount of light that can be measured at certain depths of water; the greater the intensity, the farther down the light will project. This measurement can be significantly affected by wind conditions and water clarity. In waters where light intensity is low, brightly colored lures are smart choices.

Line Guides - The eyelets or rings on a rod through which fishing line is passed.

Lipless Crankbaits - Artificial baits designed to resemble a swimming baitfish. Such plugs vibrate and/or wobble during retrieve; some have built-in rattles. Also called swimming baits.

Livewell - Compartment in a boat designed to keep fish alive.

Loose-Action Plug - A lure with wide slow movements from side to side.

Lunker - A slang term used to describe a very large bass.

M top

Marker Bouy
- a plastic bouy, usaually in a fluorescent color, that is tossed in the water to identify a fish holding area or a school of fish.

Mesotrophic - Lake classification describing middle-aged bodies of water between oligotrophic (young) and eutrophic (old) classifications. A body of water having a moderate amount of dissolved nutrients.

Micropterus Dolomieui - The Latin term for Smallmouth Bass.

Micropterus Salmoides - The Latin term for Largemouth Bass.

Migration Route - The path followed by bass when moving from one area to another.

Milfoil - Surface-growing aquatic plants.

Minnow - Any of several small fish less than a specific size and not considered gamefish.

Mono - Short for monofilament.

Monofilament - A single, untwisted, synthetic filament.

N top

- The spot in a river or stream where the female bass deposits her eggs and the fry are guarded by the male.

O top

- Lake classification used to describe young bodies of water characterized by deep, clear, cold, weedless water which can support fish such as lake trout and whitefish.

Organic Baits - Minnows, insects, worms, fish eggs, cut bait, cheese, or similar substances placed on a hook and used as a lure.

Overfishing - Applying a fishing effort beyond which will generate a desirable, sustainable, or 'safe' population or stock level.

Oxbow - A U shaped bend in a river or stream.

P top

- Personal Floatation Device, aka, a life vest or life jacket.

pH - Concentration of Hydrogen ions (H+); a value used to express acidity and alkalinity. A pH of 7 is neutral, a pH of 2 is a strong acid and a pH of 12 is a strong alkali.

pH Meter - Just as a thermometer measures heat and cold, a pH meter can be used to measure the acidity and alkalinity of water.

Pattern - A defined set of location and presentation factors that consistently produce fish.

Pectoral Fin - The fin usually found on each side of the body behind the gill opening; this pair of fins is found on the lower parts of the body in primitive forms of fish; corresponding to the forelimbs of higher vertebrates; united to form the disc in most rays.

Pelvic Fins - Pair of juxtaposed fins ventrally on the body in front of the anus; varies from abdominal in position in primitive fishes such as herrings to the more anterior locations termed thoracic or jugular in advanced fishes; sometimes called ventral fins.

Perca flavescens - Latin name for yellow perch

Pick-Up - The act of a bass taking a slowly fished lure, such as a plastic worm, crawfish or lizard.

Pike - Fish of the Family Esocidae, Order Salmoniformes (salmons, pikes and smelts).

Pit - Area excavated for mining operations that fills with water.

Pitching - Presentation technique in which worms or jigs are dropped into cover at close range with an underhand pendulum motion, using a 6 1/2 to 7 1/2 foot baitcasting rod.

Pocket - A small indentation of the shoreline.

Point - A finger of land jutting into the water. A shoreline feature where the shoreline makes a turn out into the lake and cuts back on itself forming a peninsula. These can be large main-lake features at the opening of a creek arm or as small as a boat. In natural lakes, a point may not be that obvious. It may only be discernable by weed growth outlining the point underwater. In this case, look at the weeds as if they were the shoreline.

Pomoxis annularis - The Latin name for the White Crappie

Pomoxis nigromaculatus - The Latin name for the Black Crappie

Pop R - Topwater plug with a dished-out (concave or "cupped") head designed to make a splash when pulled sharply.

Post Front - The period following a weather front.

Port - The left side of a boat or ship.

Presentation - A collective term referring to choice of type of lure, color, and size; structure targeted; amount of disturbance a bait makes when entering the water; and retrieval technique, speed, and depth used to catch fish.

Professional Overrun - Another more polite term for backlash. Also called spaghetti.

Put-In - A term used to denote the launch area for the start of a float trip.

Q top

- Area excavated for mining operations that fills with water.

R top

- A term used to denote the launch/retreive area for a boat.

Release - Returning fish, in the best possible condition after removal of the hook, to the water from which it was taken.

Reservoir - An artificial water body, normally used for drinking water supply, and which may also be stocked with fish.

Re-stocking - The practice of releasing artificially reared fry or fingerlings into ponds, reservoirs, or open waters.

Revolving-Spool Reel - Another term for baitcasting reel. The spool turns during casting, unlike the spool of a spinning or spincasting reel.

Riprap - Loose rock, stacked on a bank by mother nature or man that transitions into the water to help prevent erosion. This is a great place where crustaceans like to hide.

River - A natural flow of water of considerable volume.

Riverbank - The bank or banks of a river.

Riverbed - The area/channel between the banks through which a river flows.

Riverboat - A boat designed for use on a river or stream.

Rivulet - A small stream or brook.

S top

- A thin piece of land that extends out from the shoreline (it can be a visible point or not) and connects to an underwater island or hump. This thin piece of land will dip down in depth before it meets with underwater island where it will again come up in depth thus giving it the name "saddle". On a topo map, the contour lines will appear like an underwater point coming from the shoreline. Out from the shoreline, the lines on each side of the point will get closer and then start getting further apart until they reach the hump or island.

Sanctuary - Deep-water fish habitat.

Seine - A fishing net designed to hang vertically in the water, the ends being drawn together to encircle fish.

Selective Harvest - Deciding to release or harvest fish, based on species, size, and relative abundance.

Serial Spawning - Spawning in bursts or pulses more than once in a spawning season in response to an environment stimulus.

Shad - Any of several cluepeid fishes that have a rather deep body.

Shoal - A submerged ridge, bank, or bar consisting of, or covered by, unconsolidated sediments (mud, sand, gravel).

Size Limit - The legal length a fish must be if it is in possession.

Slip Sinker - A lead, zinc or steel weight with a hole through the center. Threaded on line, a slip sinker slides freely up and down.

Slot Limit - Dictates that fish within a specified mininum and maximum size range which must be released immediately.

Slough - A long, narrow stretch of water such as a small stream or feeder tributary off a lake or river.

Slow Roll - Spinnerbait presentation in which the lure is retrieved slowly through and over cover and objects.

Slush Bait - Topwater plug with flat or pointed head.

Smallmouth Bass - A black bass, primarily bronze in color, who's jaw does not extend beyond the eye and is found in clear rivers and lakes; also called bronzebacks, brown bass, river bass, and smallies.

Soft Bottom - River bottoms which are comprised of soft material such as silt, mud, or muck.

Sonar - An acronym derived from the expression 'sound navigation' and ranging; the method or the equipment for determining by underwater sound techniques the presence, location, or nature of objects in the sea; a system for determining distance of an underwater object by measuring the interval of time between transmission of an underwater sonic or ultrasonic signal and return of its echo.

Spawning - Release or deposition of spermatozoa or ova, of which some will fertilize or be fertilized to produce offspring; fish reproduction process characterized by females and males depositing eggs and sperm into the water simultaneously or in succession so as to fertilize the eggs.

Spincaster - A manner of fishing employing a push-button, closed-face spinning reel and baitcasting rod.

Spinnerbait - A type of artificial lure that consists of one or two rotating blades and either a straight or safety-pin style shaft dressed with material.

Spinning - A manner of fishing employing an open-face or closed-face spinning reel an spinning rod; reel is mounted on the underside of the rod; rod guides are on the underside of the rod.

Split Shot Sinker - A small ball of lead of varying weights that is split open on one side and can be placed directly on the line.

Spaghette - Another term for backlash. Also called Professional Overrun.

Spook - The act of alarming a fish in a negative way. Examples: excessive noise, casting a human shadow.

Stained - A discoloration of the water usually occurring after a heavy rain.

Starboard - The right side of a boat or ship.

Stick-Up - Stationary structure - stump, limb, section of pipe, fence post - that protrudes above the surface of the water.

Stizostedion vitreum - The Latin term for Walleye.

Stocking - The practice of releasing artificially reared fry or fingerlings into ponds, reservoirs, or open waters.

Stragglers - Bass that remain near shore following a general migration.

Strain - In fish, a strain is a group of related individuals that was created though selective breeding and that is genetically different from other strains of the same species.

Stream - A body of running water.

Streambed - The channel being occupied or formerly occupied by a stream.

Structure - Changes in the shape of the bottom of lakes, rivers, or impoundments, especially those that influence fish behavior. Examples include manmade cribs, flooded roadbeds, humps, ledges, and drop-offs.

Suspended Fish - Fish at mid-level depths, neither near the surface nor on the bottom.

Swim Bladder - A tough-walled gas-filled sac lying in the upper part of the body cavity of many bony fishes just beneath the vertebral column; its principal function is to offset the weight of heavier tissue such as bone. In some fishes used for sound production or respiration.

Swimming Lures - Sinking-type artificial baits designed to resemble a swimming baitfish. Such plugs vibrate and/or wobble during retrieve; some have built-in rattles. Also called lipless crankbaits.

T top

- Compact, lead-bodied lures with one or two spinner blades attached to the tail, and a treble hook suspended from the body; designed to resemble a wounded shad; effective on schooling bass.

Tagging - Marking, or attaching a tag to an individual or group of individuals, so that it or they can be identified on recapture; used for the study of movement, migration and stock delineation, for the examination in a stock and for the recovery of biological specimens.

Take-Out - A term used to specify where boats are taken out of the water at the end of a float trip.

Taper - An area in a body of water that slopes toward deeper depths.

Terminal Tackle - A term that refers collectively to bobbers, sinkers, leaders, hooks, lures, snaps, swivels, and other gear that go at the end of a line.

Texas Rig - The method of securing a hook to a soft-plastic bait - worm, lizard, crawfish, by burying the hook point into the body of the lure.

Thermocline - The distinct interface between surface waters and cooler, deeper waters; region below the surface layer of the sea or lake, where temperature declines abruptly with increasing depth.

Tight-Action Plug - A lure with short, rapid side-to-side movement.

Tiptop - Line guide or Eyelit at top of a fishing rod.

Topwater Lure - A lure that floats and is designed to be used to create some degree of disturbance on the surface during retrieve.

Trailer Hook - The extra hook, or cheater hook added to a single-hook lure, such as a spinnerbait.

Transducer - A device that converts electrical energy to sound energy, or the converse.

Transition - The imaginary line where one type of bottom material changes to another.

Treble Hook - Hook with single or bundled shaft and three points.

Tributary - A creek, stream, or river that feeds a larger stream or river or lake.

Triggering - Employment of any lure-retrieval technique or other fishing strategy that causes a fish to strike.

Trolling - Several lures are towed behind the fishing vessel and retrieved as strikes are made.

Trolling Motor - A small electric fishing motor, typically mounted on the bow, that is used as secondary means of propulsion, for boat positioning, and to maneuver quietly in fishing areas.

Tubing (float fishing) - To float down a river or stream in an inner tube like craft while fishing.

Turnover - The period when the cold water on the surface of a body of water descends and is replaced by warmer water from below.

U top

- United States Coast Guard

USGS - United States Geological Survey.

V top

Ventral Fin
- The fin located on the front of a fish's abdomen.

Vertebra - An individual segment of the backbone of a fish.

Vertebrate - A creature that has a backbone, for instance a fish or a mammal.

Visibility - The distance, measured in terms of depth, that you can see into a body of water; is directly affected by water clarity.

W top

- To transverse a river or stream on foot; most commonly done in shallower waterways.

Watercourse - A stream of water; natural or man-made channel through which water flows.

Water Dog - Any of several large American salamanders.

water column - Vertical section of the sea or lake.

Water Parting - A boundary line separating the drainage districts of two streams.

Watershed - A region bounded by a water parting and finally draining to a particular body of water or watercourse.

Weedless - A description of a lure designed to be fished in heavy cover with a minimum amount of snagging.

Weedline - Abrupt edge of a weedbed caused by a change in depth, bottom type, or other factor.

Worming - The act of fishing with a plastic worm, lizard, crawfish, or similar bait

Y top

Year Class
- Individuals spawned in the same year (or spawning season, when that spans the end of one year and the beginning of the next).

Yolk Sac - In embryos and early fish larvae, a bag-like ventral extension of the gut containing nutrive materials. It nourishes the growing fish until it is able to feed itself.

Z top

- Animals (mostly microscopic) which drift freely in the water column.