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Chumming (American English from Powhatan[1]) is the practice of luring various animals, usually fish such as sharks, by throwing "chum" into the water.[citation needed] Chum is bait consisting of fish parts, bone and blood, which attract fish, particularly sharks owing to their keen sense of smell.[citation needed]

Also known as rubby dubby (West Country and Yorkshire, UK),[2] shirvey or chirvey (Guernsey, Channel Islands),[citation needed] burley or burlying (Australasia),[citation needed] and bait balls.[citation needed]

Chumming is illegal in some parts of the world (such as in the state of Alabama in the U.S.,[3][full citation needed]) because of the danger it can pose by conditioning sharks to associate feeding with the presence of humans.

Chumming is a common practice seen as an effective by fishermen all over the world, typically in ocean waters.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Siebert, Frank (1975). "Resurrecting Virginia Algonquian from the dead: The reconstituted and historical phonology of Powhatan," In: Studies in Southeastern Indian Languages (James Crawford, Ed.), p. 290, Athens, GA, USA: University of Georgia Press.
  2. ^ "Shark Fishing Chum (rubby dubby)", WhitbySeaAnglers
  3. ^ Shark Baiting Regulation in Effect[full citation needed]