What Does a Fish Look Like on a Fish Finder?

By Wade Johnson

What a Fish Look Like on a Fish FinderIt is quite a trick to detect what does a fish look like on a fish finder amongst all the vegetation, and the water surface.

There is a high chance of getting things on the fish finder display mistaken as a fish. Luckily, this happens quite rarely if you know how to determine and distinguish the fish from other underwater objects.

And frankly speaking, this whole way of detecting the fish through a fish finder is extremely easy without any muddle.

What Does a Fish Look Like on a Fish Finder?

The fish looks extremely identical on a variety of fish finders bearing different technology.

And by the technology, we meant the transducer type having the support of different sonar systems.

So, let’s dig out what fish looks like on different fish finders bearing different sonar systems!

Fish Arches on Traditional Sonars

The colorful arches as you see on the fish finder display (almost) tell the detection of a fish using a traditional 2D sonar.

But that could be traumatizing for the new anglers because they can easily get that arch mistaken for vegetation and other objects, especially when the fish is hiding in and around the weeds and covers.

To confirm that it is a fish, wait a bit to see if it moves for an instance.

And when that arch is away from the waterbed and lingering in between, that is (most likely) a confirmed fish.

If you are good at detecting the fish arches, this average and low-priced fish finder welcomes you to operate it at its full potential!

Fish as Solid Lines or Blob

Well, if your fish finder has been showing the fish as solid lines or blobs, you do not have to worry about it!

The thing is, your boat might be moving, isn’t it? The sound waves sent out of the sonar system need to reach the water floor and then back up to the transducer to sketch the complete form of a fish or other objects. When the boat is moving even at the slightest speed, the incomplete reception of sound waves will show the fish’s presence in bright solid lines.

Fish on the Down Imaging Sonar

The Down Imaging sonar gives your fish finder the ability to sketch a truly realistic image upon its display.

This simplifies the whole scenario for you — giving you the perfect real-world image of the water floor where you can distinguish everything quite conveniently including the fish.

We see it as rather popular amongst the anglers who take their effort one step ahead to do their best on their fishing trips.

And the fish with the down imaging sonar looks like a bright solid-colored object flying around while giving you a good hunch to lock on the size as well, so that is going to be two jobs in one attempt.

Fish on the Side Imaging

In another sonar with Side Imaging, the fish will pop out in bright and dark spots to confirm it is your catch down the boat.

The shadow here is the pivotal aspect confirming the fish hauling around.

Fish on the Live Imaging

If you can afford such a fish finder, you are a blessed angler!

This detects the movement of fish in real-time giving you the absolute confirmation you got a fish close by.


Believe us, what does a fish look like on a fish finder is absolutely and truly dependent on what your fish finder has in the form of a sonar system a.k.a., the transducer.

From traditional to real-time live imaging sonar systems, you know how the fish looks on the display.

And what we know is, that it is all about a matter of practice and experience to learn how fish looks on the fish finder despite the type of sonar system it supports.

So, go fishing and witness the difference every time! 🙂

Wade Johnson
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