Love at First Bite?

We reveal the lure of holding fish in your Tinder profile photos…

We analyzed the photos used by young Florida men (aged between 18-35) on the world’s biggest dating app, Tinder, and discovered that 22% choose to include one featuring themselves with a recently caught fish!

In response, we decided to survey the members of an American sorority to assess whether proximity to a fish in Tinder profile photos really does make a man appear to be more of a catch to women, and, if so, which fish a man should hold in order to appear most attractive…

Over 1000 members of the Alpha Epsilon Phi (AEPhi) sorority answered our survey that we conducted during November and December 2015. Their answers revealed that:

46% of young American women (in their late teens and early to mid-twenties) find Tinder photos of men holding a fish more attractive than those of men without!

Those young women who considered a man with a fish attractive were then shown real-life images of potential dates posing with 10 different types of fish, and asked to select their favorite image.

Nearly a quarter of respondents picked the photo featuring the Great Northern Tilefish as the most alluring and complimentary when featured alongside the man who appeared to have caught it.

Take the survey yourself here.

Most attractive: Great Northern Tilefish

The hottest catch for a sorority sister was a man with the large, ostentatious Great Northern Tilefish, 
with nearly a quarter of women finding men holding a tilefish the most attractive profile.

Often growing well over 3.5ft (1m) long, and weighing up to 65lb (30kg), the Great Northern Tilefish
also has a beautiful metallic gold, blue and pink skin, and can be found along the east coast of the USA and around the Gulf of Mexico.

Honorable Mention: Sailfish

The marine embodiment of grace and virility, perhaps unsurprisingly the Sailfish is the second-most
alluring fish for a man to hold, with just under 20% of the female vote. Lean, powerful and independent, it could be interpreted that a Sailfish in a man’s dating profile hints at athleticism, finesse, and free-spiritedness. 

Sailfish are widespread across oceanic regions worldwide, including the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans.

Least attractive: Juvenile Common Carp

The humble juvenile carp is the least romantically impressive fish for a man to hold, with less than
1% of the sorority’s vote.

Common in freshwater lakes and large rivers across Europe, Asia, North America and Australia, and usually around a length of 4-6in (10-15cm), a diminutive young common carp is unlikely to help woo a woman, suggesting that, in the aquatic world at least, perhaps size does matter. 

Full results:

Number of men who hold a fish in their Tinder profile:

  • In Florida: 22%
  • In San Francisco: 10%
  • In Chicago: 8%
  • In New York: 5%
  • In Washington: 3%
  • In London: <1%


46% preferred dating photos with men holding fish.

54% preferred dating photos with men not holding fish.

For those who indicated that they considered men with fish to be attractive, the most to least
attractive fish to hold were:

  1. Great Northern Tilefish: 21%
  2. Sailfish: 18%
  3. African Pompano: 16%
  4. Red Grouper: 12%
  5. King Mackerel: 9%
  6. Amber Jack: 8%
  7. American Red Snapper: 8%
  8. Hog Fish: 5%
  9. Barracuda: 3%
  10. Juvenile Common Carp: <1%