Electronic Fish Bite Alarm

“Electronic Bite Alarm” or “Bite Indicators for Fishing”, are devices that attach to your line, or rod stand. It monitors the lines/rods which they are attached to, for vibrations from fish trying your bait. When any are detected, a buzzer and light go off to alert you that there is a fish on!

With the best will in the world, sometimes you are going to be distracted when you are fishing, looking at a second rod, talking to your friends, drinking, eating, and sleeping. If you give the fish too much time he may spit the hook out before you get the chance to strike!

Having a nibble when you have an Electronic Bite Indicator means, you are going to notice immediately when that fish is testing your bait. This gives you the opportunity to strike at precisely the right time.

An inexpensive device, which will raise anyone’s catch rate. To find out what to look for when buying, and other general advice, read on!

In A Hurry?

In a hurry? If you do not have time to read the in-depth article, below are the products recommended.

Bite Alarm

What Is A Bite Alarm?

Bite alarms for fishing, have been used for millennia now, since the first men fished. These alarms are designed to let you know when you have a fish on your line. I suppose that the original one is the float which moves when you get a bite.

After this, fishermen wanted to know if they got a fish when they were not looking at their lines. Maybe they were sleeping or working while fishing for their dinners in days gone by. So they attached small bells to their lines.

When a fish took one of their lines, the bell would ring alerting the fisherman. He did not know however, when he heard the bell ring, which of his lines had the fish on it. Or indeed if it was his bell or his neighbor’s bell ringing.

The as technology improved, we ended up with today’s electronic bite alarms

Electronic Bite Alarm

What is an electronic bite alarm? This is a battery-powered device, which attaches to your rod or line, and when a fish touches the bait, informs you in some way. The functions provided by these vary from device to device, usually depending on how expensive they are. (An electronic bite alarm can typically cost from between $5 and $100 for a set)

Features Of These Electronic Bite Alarms

One of these devices, at the most basic level, will attach to your line, and buzz when a fish bites at your bate. The noise alerting you if you are sleeping or otherwise engaged

But what else can the more expensive models do? Below is a list of most of the possible features

  • Volume Control
  • Different Bite Alarm Sounds
  • Sensitivity Control
  • LED Light Indicator
  • Unique Frequency
  • Remote Receiver
  • Receiver Has Indicator Number
  • Remote Receiver Speaker
  • Longer Operating Range
  • Sound On/Off
  • Remote Receiver Vibration
  • Automatic Pairing
  • Illuminated Swinger (Jack Light Tension)

Volume Control

When you get a fish bite alarm, you expect it to be loud, so that if you are sleeping or otherwise engaged, it can inform you. However, there will be occasions when you are using it, when you do not want the noises to be loud, or even on at all.

Maybe you are using the remote and have it on vibrate as you do not want to wake the other anglers at 3 am

Different Bite Alarm Sound.

When there are a lot of anglers in a competition, or some similar situation, and everyone is using Bite indicators, then if an alarm starts to go off – who’s, is it?

You want to be able to set a different bite alarm sound, so that you can tell when yours is going off. This allows you to tell your sound from the dozens of others around you

Sensitivity Control.

Electronic bite alarms work but detecting when a fish has taken the bait. It does this by detecting vibrations in the fishing line.

On a very windy day, the water will be rough, and cause vibrations in the line also. You do not want all of these to make the alarm go off. So what the sensitivity control does, is to allow you to set how much the line has to vibrate before going off, so that the wind does not cause a “False Alarm”

LED Light Indicator.

This is simply a small light on the alarm unit. When it is dark, and you hear an noise going off, you can look and see which is beig triggered.

Remote Receiver.

Should you want to sleep in a tent, or be away from your lines when fishing, having an electronic bite alarm with remote receiver allows you to monitor your rods from afar. (well approx. 120 yards / 100 meters).

You can even turn off the alarms on the rods and just use the receiver in your tent. Also, should you hear a faint bell, you can check on the remote to see if it is yours, before rushing to your rods.

Receiver Indicator Number.

You may have several lines out with alarms attached, and they may not all be in one location. You can buy sets of alarms that are all linked to one receiver.

These receivers display which of the lines currently has a bite. This allows you to go straight to the correct rod, rather than have to go looking for the rod which has the fish on.

Remote Receiver Speaker.

If you are in your tent with your lines out, there is a good chance that you will be sleeping. The speaker in the remote acts as a sort of alarm clock, waking you at the right time to catch that fish

Longer Operating Range.

The ranges of the handsets tend to be reasonably low (approx. 120 yards/100 meters). This is perfect for most situations, but should you be going far from your rods. Make sure to get something that has a good range, or the receiver will not be working!

Unique Frequency.

Once again, if there are several fishermen all using electronic bite alarms, there is a chance that one of your competitor’s alarms will trigger your receiver unit.

To get around this, some receivers and bite alarm sets allow you to use a unique frequency, or enter a code so that the receiver unit is uniquely paired to the base unit.

Automatic Pairing.

When you initially buy these units, or you change the frequency, you need to be able to match the bite alarms with the receiver units. This allows the receiver to pick up the correct units.

Automatic pairing allows you to do this with ease

Sound On/Off.

Fairly obvious, sometimes you will not want the receiver unit to make any noise. Turning off the sound will mean that you will just see a flashing light when you have a fish on. Just remember not to fall asleep!

Remote Receiver Vibration.

You want to sleep, but do not want your remote to make any noise when you have a fish on. Just set the remote to vibrate, and put it somewhere where it’s going to wake you.

Very similar to the vibrate setting on your SmartPhone

Illuminated Swinger.

This is an optional addition that connects to the bite alarm. It is a weighted arm, where the weight up and down can be moved increasing the tension in the line until it is the perfect tension. 

Other Questions

Why use bobbins with bite alarms?

How do you put a bell on a fishing pole?


If you require more information, please check these references

Bite Indicator , article, “en.wikipedia.org”, retrieved on, Sun 08-September-2019

Watch , article, “www.youtube.com”, retrieved on, Sun 08-September-2019

Carp Bite Alarm Setup Advice Needed , article, “www.reddit.com”, retrieved on, Sun 08-September-2019

Steve Marsh