Animal Crossing Fish list: All fish prices, locations, and how to catch rare fish with or without fish bait

All fish you can catch in Animal Crossing - and where to find them.

Fishing in Animal Crossing has proven to be one of the most popular activities throughout the series.

Catching fish several purposes - as something to collect and donate to the Museum, to make money with rare fish going for a high price.

Additionally, if you're not fussed about fleshing out the museum, you can also unlock an exclusive Golden Tool if you find every one.

As with bugs and many other aspects of the game, fish appear seasonally and changes each month, so you'll want to check in regularly.

This Animal Crossing fish list focuses on the Northern Hemisphere to show all fish as they come and go, but if you want a condensed look at the weeks ahead, we have a dedicated new fish and insects arriving and leaving this month page.

On this page:

How to increase your chances of catching fish in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

The basics of catching a fish are pretty simple. Once you have crafted a fishing rod, equip it at the edge of a body of water and cast it out near the outline of a fish. Wait until it starts nibbling, and once it goes under, press the A button to lure it in.

animal_crossing_fishing_rare_catch_10
Excuse the mess.

Of course, there are plenty of other things you should be aware of when it comes to fishing:

  • All parts of the island - from the ocean shore to rivers, ponds, waterfalls, the mouths of rivers and even higher elevations - will see different fish appear.
  • Though you cannot see what fish you are catching before you land it, both the location and the size can help narrow down any you might be looking for.
animal_crossing_fishing_rare_catch_4
It's worth trying to fish all over the island - including in ponds.
  • When casting, aim for just in front of the fish. If it doesn't take notice straight away, pull the line up. Fish have different visibilities, try casting it closer next time.
  • Make sure it has definitely ignored your line however, as if you cast too early, it'll swim away. If you're struggling to reach it, then reposition yourself and try again.
  • If you're struggling to time pulling the lure - say if you're pulling the lure too early - it might be worth concentrating more on the sound and vibration over the sight of the fish going in for a bite. An extra tip by commenter TotesBreakfast says try closing your eyes to help you focus better (which is now our favourite fish catching method!)
  • Either way, the fish will only nibble a total of five times before it goes under and you have to reel it in.
  • Not only does location and weather impact fish spawns, but so does the time of day and the time of year. Our fish list at the end of this article can show you where and when you should be timing things.
  • Fishing is one of the few interactions you can make when playing with friends in multiplayer without being a Best Friend - and makes for a relaxing social activity even if you are!
  • If you're looking for a specific fish in a small area - say a river cliff top, or river mouth - try scaring other nearby fish away, either by pulling and withdrawing your lure, or running along the water's edge. The game will only spawn a certain number of fish within a radius, so if you run along the coast, scaring everything away, then come back, you can force a fish to spawn where you first started.
  • Once you have unlocked terraforming, you can create your own ponds and greater expanses of river clifftops to increase your chances of those fish spawning there. You cannot edit or add to the pier or river mouth areas however.

Perhaps one of the best pieces of advice for finding rare fish, however, is to use lure...

How to catch fish using fish bait with a Manila Clam explained

As you've been exploring the shores of your island, you might have seen little holes appear with spirts of water.

Digging at these locations can result in items being found, but one of the most common is the Manila Clam.

animal_crossing_fish_bait_3

When you find one of these for the first time, you'll learn a DIY recipe for Fish Bait. Head to a DIY workshop to craft this whenever you're ready.

animal_crossing_fish_bait_1

To use Fish Bait in Animal Crossing, stand at water and select the item from your inventory, where you'll be given the option to 'Scatter Food'. Doing so will cause a fish to instantly appear, allowing you to fish there.

This fish won't be any rarer than any you might find ordinarily, but the benefit of using Fish Bait is you can control where they appear. This means if you're looking for a fish in an awkward location - such as on a pier, or in the mouth of a river - it will force one to spawn there.

animal_crossing_fish_bait_4

Note according to Mecal00 on reddit, it has been known that fish bait can make rare fish appear outside of their required circumstances - such as a Coelacanth when it isn't raining. This could be a bug, and either way, the chances of this spawning are still very small - but useful to know regardless!

Ultimately, Fish Bait isn't an essential item when it comes to fishing - but saves having to run back and forth until one appears where you need it to.

How to catch rare fish and the highest fish prices in Animal Crossing: New Horizons explained

As you might expect, the rarer the fish, the higher the price it will sell for in the shop - making for a welcome money making opportunity.

But as implied, even if you know the correct time and place of where they will appear, finding these fish are difficult - requiring a dose of luck to appear, then some skill in catching them, especially as rarer fish tend to be more skittish when biting the lure.

If you're after rarer fish, especially to sell, there are some rules to follow:

  • If you're planning to make money, keep scanning the sea as it's where most expensive larger fish can appear, so stick to the coast (and when you can, also check in the pier area).
  • If a fish has a fin, it's likely to be a shark - and is one of the few fish types you can spot ahead of catching.
  • Though lures don't increase your chances, they will force a fish to appear in unusual locations, such as the pier - saving you some effort in waiting.
  • Though rain is unconfirmed to increase numbers or chances of certain types of fish, the infamous Coelacanth will only appear when it rains - which can give you an extra incentive to get out to the coast when it does.
  • Mystery Islands have higher fish spawns than your island. Though the layout is random - some could have a river cliff, while others will only spawn trash for you to catch - it can help you better catch fish in certain locations, especially if you use the 'scaring' tactic mentioned earlier.
  • Ultimately - aside from known factors such as time of day, year and island location, rare fish appear by luck, so it's a case of fishing again, and again, and again...

It's worth adding though some fish can sell for up to 15,000 Bells each, the chances of catching enough to make it worth prioritising over other make money opportunities - such as finding Tarantulas and Butterflies - is unlikely. As a result, see fishing as more of a completionist exercise than a lucrative one!

Though not an exhaustive list of rare fish or fish prices, here are our recommendations on how to catch rare fish in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Note - all months mentioned are for the Northern Hemisphere:

Football Fish (fish price - 5,000 Bells) - If you want a balance of finding a fish which is uncommon but fetches a good price, we'd recommend looking for Football Fish. These appear in the sea, between November and March, and 4pm to 9am.

animal_crossing_fishing_rare_catch_7
The Football Fish is as 'common' as rare fish get - and still fetch a decent price.

Oarfish (fish price - 9,000 Bells) - The Oarfish is perhaps one of the more 'surprising' rare fish which, despite its huge size when caught, looks like a regular 'large' fish in the water, meaning you're likely to stumbling upon it by accident. You'll find this in the sea at any time of day between December and May.

Golden Trout (fish price 15,000 Bells) - Found between March to May and September to November between 4pm and 9am, you'll find the Golden Trout in the hardest place to reach on the island - the source of the river at the highest elevation. Bring a ladder and a few fish baits with you - that way you can keep spawning them without having to travel back and forth. It's very, very rare - but keep trying!

Blue Marlin (fish price 10,000 Bells) - You can find this all day between November to April and July to September. It's one of the few fish which appears at the pier - so have a quick glance when you pass by it, or use some fish bait to encourage it out.

Sharks (fish prices - between 8,000 Bells and 15,000 Bells) - There are many different varieties throughout the year, but as long as you fish out at sea, and fish in the evening hours (between 4pm and 9am) there's a (rare) chance you can find one. If you see a fin on the fish silhouette before you catch it, then you're in luck. Just hope you catch it!

Here is Hacked Switch on YouTube showing off some of these varieties:

Coelacanth (fish price - 15,000 Bells) - Infamous for being one of the rarest fish in the Animal Crossing series, Coelacanth is back in New Horizons. The rules for this one are pretty simple - it needs to rain, but otherwise it's available all year round, at all times of day, and from the ocean. Fingers crossed it makes an appearance.

Here's Leep Plays on YouTube with some extraordinary luck in catching five in quick succession:


New to Animal Crossing? Our Animal Crossing New Horizons tips can help with the basics. From the off, there's fish and bugs to catch, flowers and fruit to grow, villagers to add or remove and tools such as the new ladder and vaulting pole to collect. Once you have settled in, you'll want to be making as many Bells as possible, start collecting K.K. Slider songs and work on your island star rating, increase your HHA ranking, incorporate Feng Shui into your room design and acquiring kitchen furniture. Recently added were Leif and Redd, who deals in fake art. Don't forget to partake in Wedding Season!


Animal Crossing: New Horizons All Fish and their prices list

Here is a list of all fish in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, as well as their spawning conditions and other behaviours.

Remember, fish will come in and out of rotation throughout the year, so it's impossible to get everything at any given time. If you're hoping to get them all and want to see what's urgent - the things about to leave, and what's appearing - our dedicated new fish and insects arriving this month page can help you see these at a glance.

It should be noted the following are for the northern hemisphere. For the southern hemisphere, each set of dates will differ by six months.

Here are all fish in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, in the order they appear in the Critterpedia:

Animal Crossing FishMonths available Times available LocationFish Price
Bitterling November to March 24 hours River 900
Pale chub All year round 9am to 4pm River 200
Crucian Carp All year round 24 hours River 160
Dace All year round 4pm to 9am River 240
Carp All year round 24 hours Pond 300
Koi All year round 4pm to 9am Pond 4000
Goldfish All year round 24 hours Pond 1300
Pop-eyed Goldfish All year round 9am to 4pm Pond 1300
Ranchu Goldfish All year round 9am to 4pm Pond 4500
Killifish April to August 24 hours Pond 300
Crawfish April to September 24 hours Pond 200
Soft-shelled Turtle August to September 4pm to 9am River 3750
Snapping Turtle April to October 9pm to 4am River 5000
Tadpole March to July 24 hours Pond 100
Frog May to August 24 hours Pond 120
Freshwater Goby All year round 4pm to 9am River 400
Loach March to May 24 hours River 400
Catfish May to October 4pm to 9am Pond 800
Giant Snakehead June to August 9am to 4pm Pond 5500
Bluegill All year round 9am to 4pm River 180
Yellow Perch October to March 24 hours River 300
Black Bass All year round 24 hours River 400
Tilapia June to October 24 hours River 800
Pike September to December 24 hours River 1800
Pond Smelt December to February 24 hours River 400
Sweetfish July to September 24 hours River 900
Cherry Salmon March to June
September to November
4pm to 9am Clifftop river 800
Char March to June
September to November
4pm to 9am Clifftop river 3800
Golden Trout March to May
September to November
4pm to 9am Clifftop river 15000
Stringfish December to March 4pm to 9am Clifftop river 15000
Salmon September 24 hours Rivermouth 700
King Salmon September 24 hours Rivermouth 1800
Mitten Crab September to November 4pm to 9am River 2000
Guppy April to November 9am to 4pm River 1300
Nibble Fish May to September 9am to 4pm River 1500
Angelfish May to November 4pm to 9am River 3000
Betta May to November 9am to 4pm River 2500
Neon Tetra April to November 9am to 4pm River 500
Rainbowfish May to November 9am to 4pm River 800
Piranha June to September 9am to 4pm
9pm to 4am
River 2500
Arowana June to September 4pm to 9am River 10000
Dorado June to September 4am to 9pm River 15000
Gar June to September 4pm to 9am Pond 6000
Arapaima June to September 4pm to 9am River 10000
Saddled Bichir June to September 9pm to 4am River 4000
Sturgeon September to March 24 hours River (Mouth) 10000
Sea Butterfly December to March 24 hours Sea 1000
Seahorse April to November 24 hours Sea 1100
Clownfish April to September 24 hours Sea 650
Surgeonfish April to September 24 hours Sea 1000
Butterfly Fish April to September 24 hours Sea 1000
Napoelonfish July to August 4am to 9pm Sea 10000
Zebra Turkeyfish April to November 24 hours Sea 500
Blowfish November to February 9pm to 4am Sea 5000
Puffer Fish July to September 24 hours Sea 250
Anchovy All year round 4am to 9pm Sea 200
Horse Mackerel All year round 24 hours Sea 150
Barred Knifejaw March to November 24 hours Sea 5000
Sea Bass All year round 24 hours Sea 400
Red Snapper All year round 24 hours Sea 3000
Dab October to April 24 hours Sea 300
Olive flounder All year round 24 hours Sea 800
Squid December to August 24 hours Sea 500
Moray Eel August to October 24 hours Sea 2000
Ribbon Eel June to October 24 hours Sea 600
Tuna November to April 24 hours Pier 7000
Blue Marlin November to April
July to September
24 hours Pier 10000
Giant Trevally May to October 24 hours Pier 4500
Mahi-Mahi May to October 24 hours Pier 6000
Ocean Sunfish July to September 4am to 9pm Sea 4000
Ray August to November 4am to 9pm Sea 3000
Saw Shark June to September 4pm to 9am Sea 12000
Hammerhead Shark June to September 4pm to 9am Sea 8000
Great White Shark June to September 4pm to 9am Sea 15000
Whale Shark June to September 24 hours Sea 13000
Suckerfish June to September 24 hours Sea 1500
Football Fish November to March 4pm to 9am Sea 2500
Oarfish December to May 24 hours Sea 9000
Barreleye All year round 9pm to 4am Sea 15000
Coelacanth All year round (must be raining) 24 hours Sea 15000

Best of luck finding those fish!

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About the author

Matthew Reynolds

Matthew Reynolds

Guides Editor

Matthew edits guides and other helpful things at Eurogamer.net. When not doing that, he's out and about playing Pokémon Go or continuing to amass his amiibo collection.

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