v50 Steam/Premium information for editors
  • v50 information can now be added to pages in the main namespace. v0.47 information can still be found in the DF2014 namespace. See here for more details on the new versioning policy.
  • Use this page to report any issues related to the migration.
This notice may be cached—the current version can be found here.


From Dwarf Fortress Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Skills used
This article is about an older version of DF.

Fishing is the labor used to catch fish. It is a good source of food (and some raw materials) in the early game, though somewhat dangerous. Its usefulness diminishes somewhat as your fortress grows, superseded by farming.

Making a Dwarf a Fisherdwarf[edit]

  1. Specify your dwarf to be a fisher via view, pref, labor.
  2. Select "Fishing" using + or -, press enter - it may be located on the second page of jobs.

Unlike mining, fishing is done without any tools.

Any dwarf with the Fisherdwarf labor enabled will fish, either in the cave river, an outside river, or the swamps. Fisherdwarves can catch various kinds of fish, as well as other aquatic creatures like turtles. Turtles can be very useful to a starting fortress, since eating them uncooked leaves behind bone and shell which your craftsdwarves can use to make trade goods, armour, and ammunition. Skilled fisherdwarves can produce a really immense amount of turtles.


Fish cannot be eaten as soon as it is caught; it must be cleaned in a fishery first.

Note: The game considers fishing a very high-priority labor, meaning that your fisherdwarf will spend most of their time fishing, usually at the expense of more urgent tasks that need doing. This means if you make your fisherdwarf a fish cleaner as well, the job will never get done and the raw fish will be left in your food stockpile (or on the ground where it was caught, if you do not have one) and will simply rot.


Outdoor Fishing[edit]

Fishing from the swamps or the outdoor river can draw your dwarves far away from the safety of the fortress. If your map has a lot of dangerous wildlife, you may want to consider assigning guard dogs to your fisherdwarf.

Underground Fishing[edit]

While fishing does not explicitly trigger cave river attacks, your fisherdwarves will likely be the first targets whenever such an attack happens. Additionally, since fisherdwarves go fishing at the beginning of each season, they are at risk of being swept away to drown when the cave river overflows.