What are coarse fish?

The term ‘Coarse’ means all of the freshwater fish found in the British isles excluding trout, sea trout and salmon. The reason in which they were determined as ‘coarse fish’ derives from a term they had prior to coarse which was the ‘rough’ fish, this was mainly due to the tubercles which some of these fish such as bream, dace and roach can develop before they begin to spawn.


Daniel Hughes


Match & Coarse



Within the group of coarse fish, they also fall into different family’s for instance; Carp, tench, roach, dace & bream fall into the cyprinidae family. The perch and the ruffe fall into the percidae family, the pike falls into the esocidae family.

Coarse fishing is the most widespread type of fishing across the UK, it’s easily accessible and all you have to do is get a fishing license and head off to your local lake, canal or river and you can start coarse fishing, with the permission of the lake owner or the club which runs the river or canal of course! Coarse species when caught are returned back to their habitat, they are not the same as game or sea species when in certain circumstances they can be taken home to eat.

We have written out a list below of some of the most common coarse fish which you can go out and start fishing for on fishing venues close to you!