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Can Fish Eat Coffee Grounds and Are They Attracted To it?

Fish are not supposed to eat coffee grounds as this contains caffeine and can be lethal, so it’s recommended to clean out your tank if you’ve spilled coffee into it. The good news is that coffee-flavored worms are a fantastic fish attractant that a lot of fishermen use.

If you’re a fisherman and a coffee lover then you might have had the idea if they go together. I might have some good news for you in that case so keep reading to find out everything between fish and coffee grounds.

Let’s get started.

Can Fish Eat Coffee Grounds?

Coffee is not suitable for fish, but there’s a twist. If you’ve ever poured a bit of your morning coffee into your 70-gallon tank by accident, it most likely won’t hurt your fish. It might even make it more favorable to some species. But if you have a 10-gallon tank and spill your coffee in it then you may have a problem and stressed fish due to the caffeine. It may not kill them but a light partial water change is recommended. You can also toss a small bag of aquarium charcoal in your filter for a few hours to clean up the water.

Are Fish Attracted to Coffee Grounds?

Fish species like bass and trout are highly attracted to worms that have been crawling around in coffee grounds. The aroma is like roses for them, just as it is to humans. But that doesn’t mean that it’s good for them to consume, coffee grounds still contain caffeine and we know caffeine and animals usually don’t go together.

That said, coffee-flavored worms seem to attract fish, especially bass and trout. Smaller fish also come up to eat the coffee grounds. Because coffee grounds are an attractant to fish, a manufacturer of fishing lures even created a coffee-flavored tube that contains coffee grounds. Anglers and fishermen agree that they’ve had more successful catches using the coffee tubes.

Using Coffee Flavored Worms as Bait

Since this method of catching fish is so effective, fishermen have been making good use of this. Anglers are almost guaranteed to catch fish if they use coffee-flavored worms as bait. This might be why you see fishermen take containers filled with coffee grounds in them.

Simply get a worm and let it crawl a bit in your coffee ground container, then get it out and put it on the hook. You should get a better success rate this way.

If you want the worms to have a strong coffee scent then you can place them in a container of soil and coffee grounds the night before you go fishing. This method is guaranteed to catch a lot of fishies!

Why Are Fish Attracted to Coffee Grounds?

It’s not clear why fish are attracted to coffee-flavored worms or why worms like coffee grounds. It could be because of the caffeine that the worms consumed, which makes them more active, or it could simply be the coffee’s aroma. Just as humans love the aroma and stimulation the caffeine brings. But in the end, it doesn’t matter because the fish get something they like and fishermen can get more fish, so it’s a win-win situation.

What Scents Attract and Repel Fish?

There are actually a lot more scents apart from coffee grounds that attract fish. We will also tell you what scents repel fish, which may be why you don’t catch any fish at all.

What Scents Attract Fish?

Fish Oils, Fish Slime, etc: This is the most obvious one. You cover your line and lures with a smell that occurs naturally and that the fishies like. If you don’t have any fresh dead fish or fish oil on your boats then remember that artificial fish attractants work very well too. GULP products work very well, another great product is Pro-Cure scents. Here you can choose between shrimp, mullet, and a lot of other scents.

Human Saliva: Believe it or not but our own saliva seems to attract fish. Make sure to moisten your knots with spit before you cinch them down to help you catch more fish.

Dairy Products: Cheese can be a controversial attractant. Some people believe it doesn’t do anything, while others are raking in the fish like it’s nothing. Snooks like the cheese smell so why not give it a try if you’re out of other options?

Garlic: If you have scents on your hands that fish don’t like such as sunscreen or bug spray then using garlic to get rid of that is a fantastic option. It also attracts fish but not as well as coffee-flavored worms or fish oils. It’s still worth a mention if you happen to have garlic on your boat and nothing else.

What Scents Repel Fish?

Bug Spray and sunscreen: If you have wiped sunscreen and bug spray all over yourself and forgot to clean your hands afterward then you’re in big trouble and might as well go home. Do never touch your fishing equipment if you have sunscreen or bug spray on you as fish hate the smell and taste of it. Simply wash your hands to get the sunscreen and bug spray off of them before you touch anything and you should be fine.

Smoking: Nicotine and fish don’t go well together. If you’re a smoker then get some fish smell on your smoking hand to tamper down the nicotine smell.

Human Skin Oils: The natural oils that are created in our skin are fish repellent. Unfortunately, you can’t stop your body from producing oil so try to mask it somehow. Getting anything fish related on your hands can help.

Petroleum Distillates: Common petroleum distillates on a boat are diesel, unleaded gas, motor oil, reel oils, and marine grease. If you get any of these things on your hands then make sure to wash them thoroughly before touching your fishing equipment.

Scented and Perfumed Soaps: Fish absolutely hate the smell of perfumed soaps so it’s a no-go.

The Bottom Line

Fish and caffeine don’t go well together so it’s recommended to clean your tank if you end up pouring coffee into it.

Besides that, coffee-flavored worms are a fantastic fish attractant and fishermen report better catch rates. Simply bring a container filled with coffee grounds and let your worms crawl into it for a bit, put them on your hook, and you’re done!


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