Electrofishing, Operational Settings

The following section builds on the electrofishing safety considerations, theory and preparations discussed in other articles within this section, and is intended to provide a generalised overview on the procedure used when electrofishing, based on the current “best practice”guidelines issued by the UK “Environment Agency“…

If you are ever in doubt over any the value to use for a fishing setting, you should always start with the lowest value and gradually increase it until the desired fishing effect is observed.

1) Check the water temperature, and do not fish in excessively hot water.

  • 16°C to 18°C for salmonids.
  • 22°C to 24°C for coarse fish especially when pike and perch are present.

2) Measure the water conductivity and use this to determine the appropriate starting voltage setting. If you do not have a water conductivity meter, then choose about 150V as a starting point, or if in doubt choose an even lower voltage.

Water Conductivity

Recommended Voltage

Adjustment Range

Recommended Duty-Cycle

Adjustment Range

<150 µS/cm

250V – 300V

300V – 400V


10% or DC (100%)

150  µS/cm – 500 µS/cm

200V – 250V

250V – 300V

10% – 20%

10% – 20% or DC (100%)

500  µS/cm – 800 µS/cm

150V – 200V

10% – 30%

800  µS/cm – 1000 µS/cm

120V – 180V

10% – 40%

>1000 µS/cm

100V – 150V

10% – 50%


3) Choose your duty-cycle mode based on the water conductivity and above table.

  • DC (100%) has better attraction and welfare properties, and is more effective in low-conductivity water. However, it is power hungry and will reduce fishing duration from a battery pack.
  • Pulsed (10% to 50%) has better immobilisation properties and is more effective in higher conductivity water.
  • If in doubt, use DC where practicable or choose the 10% duty-cycle setting and work upwards during fishing.

4) Choose the frequency based on the fish type being sought….

Fish Type

Recommended Frequency

Range (Hz)


40Hz – 60Hz


30Hz –50Hz


10Hz –40Hz


30Hz –50Hz


10Hz –40Hz


10Hz –60Hz

E-Fish (UK) Limited gratefully acknowledge the information supplied by the UK Environment Agency from which sections of the content of this article have been reproduced or adapted.
Please Note that the content of these pages is for general information purposes only and does not constitute ‘advice’. Readers should always consult their specific product documentation, and seek the advice of an appropriately qualified professional before undertaking any electrofishing activity. For further information, please refer to our “Disclaimer” page.