How to Use Lures and Bait in Stardew Valley

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Fish in Stardew Valley is notoriously difficult, especially when the player has a low level of fishing skill. However, by using the right tackle it can be a bit easier. There are two different categories of items that can be attached to a fishing rod: lures and bait. Lures, or tackle, are generally used to aid in the process of catching fish, while baits are mainly used to attract fish in the first place.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: How to Fish

There are a handful of tackle and bait types in Stardew Valley, and they are obtained in different ways. Some of them are purchased from Willy’s shop, some can be crafted by the player, and some are uniquely found. Here’s how to find them all, how to use them, and what they do.

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How to use bait and tackle


How to use bait and tackle in Stardew Valley

Attaching bait or tackle to a fishing rod is a bit tricky, so let’s get to that first.

The first fishing rod players get is the Bamboo Pole, which is given by Willy at the start of the game. Unfortunately, this rod cannot be equipped with bait or tackle. The same goes for the practice rod that Willy sells.

  • At fishing level 2, Willy will start selling the fiberglass rod. Bait can be used with this rod, but not the tackle.
  • At Fishing Level 6, the Iridium Rod is unlocked and sold in Willy’s Shop. This rod allows the player to use both bait and tackle.

To attach a bait or tackle to a rod, go to the inventory screen. Select the bait or tackle, then hover over the fishing rod and place it. Here’s how to do it on each platform:

Platform Pick up a pile of bait or lures Pick up bait one at a time To attach To delete
computer left click Right click Right click Right click
Change A Yes Yes Yes
PlayStation X Square Square X
Xbox A X X X
Mobile Just drag and drop! *See note

*There is currently no way to simply remove bait or tackle from a fishing rod on mobile devices. A workaround players have found is to craft another type of bait or tackle and replace the attached bait or lure with it.

Spinner and Dressed Spinner


Stardew Valley Spinners
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Spinner Fishing level 6 500g
dressed spinner Fishing level 8 1,000

These are the most basic lures in the game, but they can be very useful, especially for impatient or speedrunners.

Both of these lures will reduce the maximum time that can elapse before a fish bites. A number of factors, including bait, fishing skill level, etc., will all influence the maximum wait time before a bit, but the absolute maximum is 30 seconds.

The standard Spinner will reduce the maximum cast time by 3.75 seconds, and the Clothed Spinner reduces it by 7.5 seconds.

barbed hook


Stardew Valley Barbed Hook
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 8 1000g
  • 1x copper bar
  • 1x iron bar
  • 1x gold bar

This lure can be random. What it does is that the fishing bar (the green bar in the minigame) “cling” to the fish icon as it rises and falls. However, this can be an advantage or a disadvantage, depending on the biting fish.

The bar will only snap to the fish icon when it’s over it, so fish moving quickly back and forth will very easily slip out of its grip. On slow fish, however, the barbed hook can be a useful item, especially for new players.

Cork


Stardew Valley Cork Bobber
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 7 750g
  • 10x Wood
  • 5x hardwood
  • 10x Slime

This lure increases the size of the green bar in the fishing minigame, by adding a flat 24 pixels. Fishing skill levels also increase the size of the bar, which means the Cork Bobber is much more useful at lower fishing skill levels, as the 24 pixels make up a larger percentage of the bar.

lead bobsledder


Stardew Valley Lead Bobber
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 6 200g

The Lead Bobber is useful when the player is struggling with the bouncing minigame bar at the bottom of the window. This lure prevents this rebound from occurring, giving the user much more control.

This lure cannot be crafted and must be purchased from Willy.

Quality Bobber


Stardew Valley Quality Lure
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Complete special order (see below)
  • 1x copper bar
  • 20x Sap
  • 5x solar essence

To unlock this lure, the player must complete Willy’s special order, titled “Juicy Bugs Wanted!” The Special Orders board can be accessed from Fall 2 Year 1. Willy tasks the player with collecting 100 bundles of bug meat and placing them in the box outside his store. Insect Meat must be collected while the quest is active and cannot come from the player’s existing storage.

The Quality Bobber increases the quality of any fish caught by one. This is one of only two ways to catch iridium-grade fish; the other is by achieving a perfect hold. This is done by catching the fish without ever leaving the green bar during the mini-game.

Bobber Trap


Bobber Trap Stardew Valley
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 6 500g

This is perhaps one of the most useful tackle options in the game. The Trap Bobber lowers the catch meter slower when the fish is outside the green bar. It slows the meter drop rate by 33%.

Treasure hunter


Treasure Lure
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 7 750g

The treasure hunter doesn’t care about helping catch fish. Instead, it increases the rate at which treasure chests spawn while fishing. The standard base rate for spawning treasure chests is 15%, and this lure adds 5%.

As a bonus, this lure also prevents the capture meter from decreasing while the player unlocks the treasure chest.

Those who enjoy finding treasure while fishing should also consider two other options to increase their chances:

  • Pirate profession, which is an option at fishing level 10 if fisherman was chosen at level 5 — it increases the chances by 15%
  • Magnets, which use the bait slot on a fishing rod — they also add 15%


The player’s daily luck can also increase or decrease the chances of finding a treasure chest, as can special charm or food luck buffs.

Lure of curiosity


Stardew Valley Lure Curiosity

This lure cannot be purchased or crafted. It can only be found by breaking crates and barrels in the Skull Cavern, Volcano Dungeon, or Quarry Mine. Some Skull Cavern mobs may also drop them from time to time.

The Curiosity Lure increases the chances of finding rare fish, with some exceptions.

Exceptions:

  • Icefish and Icefish II (other legendary fish get the boost)
  • Lava Eels at Volcano Caldera (Lava Eels receive mine boost at level 100)
  • Some takes on the underwater path receive a to diminish (midnight squid, octopus, sea cucumber, octopus and seaweed)

The percentage increase for everything else depends on a number of factors. Check Stardew Valley Wiki comprehensive analysis for individual species and locations.

Bait


Stardew Valley Bait
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 2 5g

Moving on to the tackle bait, let’s start with the standard bait. This article is quite simple: it reduces the maximum time for a fish to bite by 50%. As a bonus, it also has reduces the chances of finding litter when fishing.

It should be noted that standard baits can be passively produced using Worm Bins, which produce a handful each day.

wild bait


Stardew Valley Wild Bait
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Befriend Linus (see below)
  • 5x Insect Meat
  • 5x Slime
  • 10x fiber

It is basically the upgraded version of the standard bait. It reduces the maximum time before a bite by 62.5%. This too adds a chance to catch two fish at once, however, this effect does not apply to legendary fish.

To unlock this crafting recipe, level up your friendship with Linus. He will teach the player how to craft it during his four-heart event.

magic bait


Stardew Valley Magic Bait
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Buy in the Hall of Qi Nuts 5 Qi gems for 20 magic bait
  • 1x radioactive ore
  • 3x Insect Meat

Magic Bait is a late game item with an interesting function. It will remove any time, weather, or seasonal restrictions for a location’s catchable fish pool. This means that the player can catch fish of any season, in any weather, at any time of the day.

The recipe can be purchased from Qi’s Walnut Room rewards for 20 Qi Gems. Magic Bait can also be purchased pre-crafted in stacks of 20 for 5 Qi Gems from the reward list.

Magnet


SDV magnet
How to unlock Price Arts and crafts
Fishing level 9 1000g

Although this item looks much more like a lure, it actually functions as bait and goes into the bait slot on a fishing rod. It will be Increases the chance of finding a treasure chest by 15% while fishing.

His description says that fish don’t like the taste, but in reality decreases maximum bite time by 50%, just like regular old bait.

Stardew Valley is available on PS4, PS Vita, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC, Android and iOS.

MORE: Stardew Valley: Where To Catch Catfish


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