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Review of Moon Up – Moon Down by John Alden Knight, Part 1

John Alden Knights Book about the story of the solunar theory

I recently purchased John Alden Knight’s Moon Up - Moon Down: The Story of the Solunar Theory and thought it is time to write up a little review.


John Alden Knight is the father of the Solunar Theory and he inspired me to create Fishing Reminder.
His findings influenced fisherman all over the world for almost 100 years.

He took the initial idea for his theory from an old-time market hunter’s knowledge and by careful observation and research he extended this idea to a well proven theory about animal feeding behavior.





For those who are not familiar with the Solunar Theory, Knight sums it up this way:


“Other conditions not being unfavorable, fish will feed, animals will move about, birds will sing and fly from place to place,
  fact, all living things will become more active, more alive, during Solunar periods than at other times of apparent equal value.”


Anyone who is mainly looking for an in depth scientific explanation of the Solunar Theory might be rather disappointed by this book.
It does however have some good autobiographic stories about Knight’s life and discoveries. 


The secret he learned from the old market hunter and fisherman from South Georgia was that the best time to go fishing or hunting will be the time when the moon is directly overhead or underfoot.


And promptly after trying this theory for the first time, he had the best bass fishing of his life, in the middle of the day when the moon was directly overhead.

Particularly the larger fish were biting ferociously. After about 2 hours of superlative fishing the action slowed down again and then stopped.

After that experience he decided that it is time to find out if this theory about the moon’s influence on animal feeding he just learned, is really true.


After few more years of observations, he discovered that at some days of the month there would be some variances of the “moon up – moon down” theory with the true schedule of feeding periods.

He made a long list of all factors that could have a possible effect on fish feeding behavior and finally narrowed it down to the sun, the moon and tides as the main actors.


Tides do have a major effect on saltwater fish.

In Knights experience the time of low tide would be the best feeding time for saltwater fish.


But because tides can’t be applied to freshwater fish he started to rather look for the cause of tides.

Tides are caused by the gravitational pull of sun and moon.


This was the dawn of the Solunar Theory.

The combined force of sun and moon could predict when fish would most likely feed.


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