How to catch a shark in Animal Crossing

Sharks are among the most well-known creatures in Animal Crossing. The game offers plenty of opportunities to hook those apex predators and show off your catches. Later, you can display them on your island, sell them for bells, or donate them to a museum.

If you're having trouble catching your first shark, no worries. We'll give you a complete guide to reeling this fish, and you won't even need a bigger boat to do it.

How to catch a shark in Animal Crossing

Like most marine species in Animal Crossing, sharks spawn at a particular time of day and season. There are four shark species in the game, with varying catch times. Here are the sharks you can catch in the Animal Crossing world:

  • saw the shark
  • Whale shark
  • Great White shark
  • Hammerhead shark

The great white shark and the saw shark can both be caught between 16 p.m. and 9 a.m., while the hammerhead shark and whale shark can be found throughout the day. However, you will need to fish at a specific time of year to catch these creatures.

In the northern hemisphere, you can only find them between June and September. As for residents of the southern hemisphere, you can catch sharks only between December and March.

Naturally, you'll need to travel to the ocean around your island to find New Horizon sharks. You will have to watch out for the fins. Fortunately, you can spot them easily, especially if you fish along the west and east coasts of the island.

However, although sharks are larger than most other ocean creatures, some fish can get huge, so size isn't always the best way to spot a shark. The main thing you should be looking for are the fins above the shadows in the water. This element is the most noticeable visual difference between regular fish and sharks. If you can spot a fin above the water, you've got a shark.

As for location, you can find sharks by patrolling the shores of your island. However, if you'd rather stick to your favorite spot, you'll need to craft a large amount of Fish Bait first:

  1. Use your shovel and go to the beach.
  2. Find small holes in the sand with water squirting out periodically.
  3. Dig up a Manila clam, allowing your character to learn the recipe for fish bait on their own.
  4. Collect your clam and head to your crafting table.
  5. Choose the fish bait recipe and craft it.

You can only use fish bait once. Luckily, you can also stack it in groups of ten, allowing you to hunt sharks with over 100 bags ready to go.

As mentioned earlier, you should go fishing between 16 p.m. and 9 a.m. When it comes to location, the pier is a top choice for several reasons.

First, it offers one of the clearest views of the species you're fighting, as island decorations can't hide them. Second, there is a good chance that you can catch a rare fish. The list of rarities includes tuna, mahi-mahi, giant trevally and blue marlin. Since these fish are extremely rare, catching them alongside the sharks is a great idea as it saves you a lot of time.

In most cases, catching sharks is similar to catching regular fish. That said, sharks tend to be rather elusive and difficult to catch. Here's what you need to do:

  1. Go to the pier or the edge of the island and face the water. Make sure you don't run to avoid spooking the fish with your steps. Since sharks are rarer than most fish, you may need to patrol the shore a little longer before you find one to reel in. To speed up the process, throw fish bait.
  2. Look for your shark's shadow and find a creature with its fin sticking out of the ocean.
  3. Cast the line using your action button and make sure the float lands before the shark.
  4. The shark should nibble your float slightly. When this happens, your controller should vibrate intensely. Press the action button again to catch the shark.
  5. The game will display the predator on camera to showcase your catch.

The last point to remember is to be patient. Instead of doing massive spurts towards the end of the season, do smaller shark catching trips throughout the month. These shorter routes can save you a lot of frustration because even if your first attempts fail, you will still have plenty of opportunities to catch your prey.

The hunt is on

While hunting sharks in real life might be unimaginable for most people, Animal Crossing is the perfect game to immerse yourself in this blood-pumping activity. All you have to do is pick your target, wait for the perfect time of year, and choose the optimal location for your fishing. After that, it's all about casting the bait, being patient, wiggling the fish, and enjoying your precious catch.

How many sharks have you caught in Animal Crossing? What other fish do you like to hunt in the game? How long does it take you on average to catch a shark? Tell us in the comments section below.

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