How to Catch Mullet with a Fishing Pole – Your Ultimate Fishing Guide

Mullet fish is just an average-sized fish. But, because of its vigorousness and great strength, most anglers find it difficult to catch them. Yet, if you are eager enough to catch mullet due to its deliciousness, it is essential to know how to catch mullet with a fishing pole. If you already have an idea of the proper ways of doing so, you will say that mullet fishing is really worth trying.

In this blog post, we will unravel the steps in catching mullets through the use of a fishing pole. But first, you need to have a little bit of knowledge about this kind of fish. Keep in mind that this water activity is not always a win-win situation. Sometimes, you will have to lose but don’t get dismayed. Just check on below and see how these steps can be of great help for your mullet fishing.

How to Catch a Mullet: Identify the Fish

Before jumping into knowing the best way on how to catch a mullet, it is actually essential to determine this kind of fish. Basically, a mullet is commonly found in British wherein you can locate three main fish species. Catching them generally uses the same method – through the use of a fishing pole or the rigs and baits.

The three main fish species of mullet are the Golden grey, thick-lipped, and thin-lipped mullet. Usually, these three species are called collectively grey mullets. In order to distinguish how to catch a mullet, let us first define one species from the other.

Thick-lipped Mullet

Scientific Name: Chelon labrosus

Average Weight: 1 Kg or 2 1/4 lbs

Among the three species of mullet, the thick-lipped mullet tends to be the biggest and the most popular inhabitant of the British waters. Its streamlined body is grey-blue in color over the back and has silver shades on its sides and belly. You can also notice dark grey-brown stripes all over the sides. Thick-lipped mullet is noticeable due to its small head, a pair of dorsal fins, pectoral fins, and anal fin.

Thin-lipped Mullet

Scientific Name: Liza ramada

Average Weight: 0.7 Kg or 1 1/2 lbs

Most of the time, the thin-lipped mullet is mistakenly identified as the thick-lipped mullet. Yet, the differences between the two are actually noticeable. Obviously, this mullet species has a thinner lip compared to the first one. In terms of weight and color, the thin-lipped species come in smaller sizes and lighter hues.

The color of this mullet is actually presented in a blue tint with lighter lines that traverse along its body. There is also a black spot that you can generally notice within the bottom part of the pectoral fin. These are the most common differences between the thick-lipped and thin-lipped mullet.

Golden Grey Mullet

how to catch mullet with a fishing pole

Scientific Name: Liza aurata

Average Weight: 340 g or 12 oz

This is actually the rarest species of mullet fish that you can see within the British waters. Its body is generally longer compared to the first two and to add up the highly noticeable tail-fin. The color of the body of the Golden grey mullet is actually dark grey that covers the back. Once it reaches the underbelly area of this fish, the dark grey color turns into a light silver shade.

Generally, the Golden grey mullet was named after the very obvious golden patches along with its gill covers. That’s why you can easily distinguish this mullet species from the other. Aside from that, the Golden grey is also the smallest among the three.

What is the Best Way on How to Catch a Mullet: Use a Fishing Pole

Since all of the mullet species are on the same umbrella under the term grey mullet, catching them also follows a similar method. Generally, the way on how to catch mullet is through a fishing pole. This means that you basically need to have rigs and baits on hand so that you can have your trophy. Here are some of the things that you must consider so that you can successfully perform the steps on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole.

1-Look for the best baits

Well, one of the techniques on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole is to attach to it the best baits. There is actually a number of baits that you can use for you to be able to catch a mullet. Included in your bait options are those tiny ragworms and fresh fish strips like the mackerel, pilchard, and herring. They basically do their job really well in catching this kind of fish species.

Other effective options are the soft-backed crab-lets, peeled prawns, and shrimps. Luckily, river fishing for mullet offers wider bait selections. Maggots, earthworms, sweet corn, and bread paste are the baits that can use in the river. In addition to that, it is also interesting to try cheese paste, boiled macaroni topped with grated cheese, and tiny pieces of peeled banana with honey.

Artificial baits are also available for mullet fishing. Best examples for this are the flounder spoons and the special angler’s mullet spoon. Both of those fishing products basically come with bait attached to the hook.

2-Know the season

In the summer and autumn months, you can generally try your luck at catching mullet. Remember that those are the usual months in which the grey mullet feeds on. Normally, the best candidates to fish a mullet are in the months of May to October.

Yet, mullets can also be caught successfully during warm winter within the estuary waters in southern England. The spring weather is another good season on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole.

3-Identify the preferred feeding grounds

Usually, the perfect areas where grey mullet are always consuming up their food are within the mid-water, seabed, and close or at the surface. In general, this means that one can see mullets feeding on all levels of water. This even includes the harbors and estuaries. The farthest kilometers within the tidal rivers are not an exception here.

Other hot spots where grey mullet loves to hang around are the piers, bays, creeks, coves, jetties, and rocky outcrops. Sometimes, mullets have the satisfaction of swimming and feeding over the shallow waters.

4-Find the best rigs to use in catching mullet

Well, depending on your location of fishing, there are recommended rigs that you can effectively use. Knowing that is highly important so that you can properly execute the way on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole.

Generally, for shore fishing, you can either use a leger rig or a paternoster rig. However, when you opt to catch mullet within the piers, wall rocks, or river banks, the light float rig is a good choice.

How to Catch Mullet with a Fishing Pole: Know the Required Materials

Now that you already have an idea about those important things that you need to take into account when catching mullet, knowing the appropriate materials is the next big thing to do. Just take note of the following and try to prepare ahead of time.


how to catch mullet with a fishing pole

In addition to the above-mentioned bait options, you can also try to use fresh bread or just a tiny piece of cotton. Another best example of effective bait for mullet fishing is oats. It would actually be better if you mixed it with some garlic powder and water. Or, you can also opt for a laying mash together with flour. Just make sure that they are combined well with water for a sticky consistency.


For mullet fishing, most anglers use a 12 to 13-ft match rod that has soft to the medium through action. The light spinning rod is also recommended.


Drag reel located on the rear is an excellent pick for mullet fishing over freshwater. This actually features easy access and convenience in changing during mullet fishing activity. Meanwhile, a spinning reel with a front drag is a great choice for saltwater mullet fishing. Although this kind of drag reel is quite heavier, they generally have more power.


The recommended fishing lines are 4-lb monofilament light lines that basically cast bubble float. A swivel having 60cm of line attached to the hook is also advisable to try on.


For the hook, you can use size #8 up to #12 for you to perform the proper way on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole. However, make sure that you do not go beyond 12. In terms of the polystyrene float, you can go for those having a 5 to 10 cm size from the hook. Remember that it is generally better to have a smaller hook.

In contrast, some anglers are fond of using hooks with a smaller size of 5cm. Yet, others are not comfortable in using such because of the very active behavior of the mullet fish. Generally, there is a high possibility of losing your catch when you opt to use a small hook.

Procedural Guide on How to Catch Mullet with a Fishing Pole

Since you are already geared up with the basic information you need to know in catching mullet, we will present the most exciting part to you. Now, if you’re ready to get your trophy, check on the steps on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole.

Step #1:

Initially, the primary step on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole is to search on the spot where mullet is. Keep in mind that mullet has an ability to tolerate salinity levels within the water; you can usually see them within the shorelines, canals, and tidal rivers. It is actually easy to look after them as they always go in groups.

Step #2:

how to catch mullet with a fishing pole

After that, the next important step to do is to prepare the hook, line, and bait that you will be going to use in catching mullet. You may use up to a 20-inch length of fishing pole that is ideal in casting with a bubble float. Surprisingly, you have a choice to make your own version of float. The DIY float generally has a small portion of wine cork rather than a float.

Step #3:

Do you want to know the best strategy on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole? Try to use a small fly during the nighttime. Nighttime fly fishing is best when lured through the natural presentation technique. Usually, when we say of natural presentation, it also means of natural baits.

Mullet fish are fond of feeding during the dark and they are trying to find silhouettes. For them, they want to feed anything that is submerged in the water below six inches and seems like food. In such cases, it is better to use dark lines and you will generally have an effective way on how to catch mullet with a fishing pole.

Step #4:

Although it has a small size compared to other fish, mullets tend to be vigorous once bitten into the hook. So, if you feel that the mullet is already putting some weight on your fishing line, it is advisable not to reel it too fast. As much as possible, reel the line very carefully. Moreover, a landing net is required to catch them successfully as they are actually good jumpers. This means that they can leap out on the water quickly.

Helpful Tips in Catching Mullet with a Fishing Pole

To successfully help you catch a mullet, check on the following tips that you may consider doing:

  • The best time for mullet fishing is during the dawn and daybreak. At these times of the day when the tide is on its elevated level, the mullet fish are generally active.
  • Schools of mullet always tend to go on with the flood tide crossing rivers and take off from the ebb tide.
  • Since the group of mullet will attract scooting for cover, its group tends to be shy and stay out of sight. Moreover, they also move quietly and crouch on a lower level.
  • It is actually advisable to immediately tighten your fishing line the moment you feel some bite on the hook. Remember that mullet species always open their mouths and tend to suck the food inside it.
  • The lips of the mullet are generally soft. That’s why it is better not to tighten the fishing line so that you can avoid the hook from tearing it out. When lifting the fish from the water, make sure that you use a net.

Frequently Asked Questions


A: The best way to attract mullets is to give them an oatmeal chum. Chum bait generally increases your possibility to get them. However, you still need to use your fishing hook and fishing line. This kind of bait will basically allow groups of mullets to start feeding on it. You can also cast in the chum and successfully have a bite.


A: Aside from using a fishing pole that demands some kind of patience, catching mullet can also be effective through casting a net. This is primarily due to their behavior of feeding on detritus, algae, and other marine invertebrates.


A: The low concentration of oxygen in the water is one of the main reasons why fish tends to keep active for five minutes time. If the water area typically has less oxygen, expect that mullet will have to jump more.


A: In order to maintain the freshness of the mullet, keep them inside good ice and cover them. Also, don’t forget to drain them. That way, the mullet stay fresh for a period of 4 days or more. Conduct an eye check on the mullet and make sure that they are not hazy.


A: There are actually fish varieties that can be perfectly frozen well even for a year. Yet, that varies depending on the proper way of freezing them. However, in the case of mullet, freezing it will actually lead to a decrease in flavor after 2 to 3 months.

Final Words

The way of catching mullet with a fishing pole is actually the best way to have this trophy fish. Although small in size, these fish species are generally active making them challenging to catch. Always prepare all the required materials that you need so that you will successfully and effectively catch one. However, be open to the possibility of snagging out of your fishing line as the mullet will usually try to escape. Because of that, it is very important to strictly follow the steps in catching out mullet fish.

Do you have any experience in fishing mullets? How was it? We would highly appreciate it if you share it with us!