For the sake of brevity, the focus of this discussion is going to be on the simplest of fishing transactions. There are an overwhelming variety of fishing styles (sport, spear, bow, nets, etc.), methods (bottom, top water, drift), types of equipment, locations, environments, etc. that can be included in the discussion, but the scope of this writing will be limited to freshwater, a simple fishing setup such as what is found in a typical off-the-shelf or homemade survival kit and what is typically available in terms of the live bait. The goal will be to increase the basic familiarity of it to the prepper or the persons in a G.O.O.D. situation that has little to no knowledge about the act of fishing and may be forced to act in that capacity to generate sustenance to survive.
Contrary to what you may think, successfully fishing to the desired outcome is not necessarily easy and likely one of the more difficult foods to get from the water, but it’s certainly not impossible. There are many considerations and factors that go into a successful fishing event and some of them include, fishing equipment being used (rod and reel, net, archery, spear, trapping, etc.), weather conditions (heavy rain, full sun, snow), body of water being fished (stream, pond, lake, river), bait available, time of day (dawn, noon, dusk), and season (spring, winter, summer), clarity and depth of water, temperature of the air and water, and the amount of cover in and around the water just to name a few. Many of the negative factors, some more than others, can be overcome with experience and knowledge. The argument can be made, that for the time and energy invested, fishing is not the best plan to procure a meal (I’ve gone home on more than one occasion with an empty stringer)--but given a particular situation it just may be your best opportunity at that moment.