Flathead catfish are a popular freshwater fish in America. They are a thrilling fish to catch because of their size, strength, fighting ability, and fighting power. How and where can you catch them? This guide will give you all the information you need to fish for flathead catfish.
Where can I find flathead catfish?
Flathead catfish can be found in large reservoirs and warm, slow-moving rivers throughout the United States. They love deep waters with rocky bottoms, boulders, and submerged logs. These structures are where flathead catfish hide, waiting for prey.
Time of day to fish for Flathead Catfish
Flathead catfish are primarily night-active creatures. It’s best to catch flathead catfish at night. If that’s not possible, you can still fish for flathead catfish in the morning or later in the afternoon.
Flathead Catfish Fishing Gear
It is important to have the right gear when fishing for flathead catfish. Here are the essentials:
Flathead catfish fishing requires a heavy-duty, fast-action rod. The rod should measure at least 6 feet in length and have a line weight between 20 and 50 pounds.
Flathead catfish prefer a baitcasting reel that has a large line capacity. A reel with a strong drag system, a minimum of 6:1 gear ratio, is best for flathead catfish.
Flathead catfish can be caught using monofilament or braided lines with a weight of 30-50 pounds. To prevent the fish breaking off, you will need a leader that is at least 60 pounds in strength.
Flathead catfish can be caught using a J-hook or a circle hook in sizes 6/0-8/0.
Flathead Catfish Bait
Flathead catfish are carnivorous, and will eat almost anything that swims. Flathead catfish love to eat these baits:
Flathead catfish love live bait, such as sunfish or shad. They will also eat minnows and crawfish as well as worms.
Flathead catfish can also be caught using cut bait. You can also use cut bait made from fish like bluegill, eel, and shad.
Many artificial baits work well for flathead catfish such as plastic worms and swimbaits.
Flathead Catfish Catching Techniques
Drift fishing is where you drift with the current using live bait or cut bait. Your bait should be placed near underwater structures as flathead catfish often hide there.
Trotlining is the act of putting a long line and multiple hooks in the waters and waiting for the fish bite. This method is ideal for larger flathead catfish.
Jugging involves attaching bait hooks to floating jugs. Position the jugs in areas where there are underwater structures, and wait for the fish bite.
Bank fishing is a popular method to catch flathead catfish. Position yourself near an underwater structure and cast your bait. The fish will then bite.
Tips for catching Flathead Catfish
Use Heavy Gear
Flathead catfish can grow up to 100 pounds so make sure you have enough gear to reel them in.
Flathead catfish can be difficult to catch and take time to find. Be patient and persistent.
Position Your Bait Near Underwater Structures
Flathead catfish are often found in underwater structures so place your bait near them to increase your chances.
Get the hook set quickly
Set the hook as soon as you feel a bite. Flathead catfish are hardy and can be difficult for you to hook.
Don’t be afraid to reel in your bait and cast again
If you aren’t getting bites, don’t be afraid to reel your bait in and cast again at a different spot.
Flathead Catfish Cleaning and Cooking
Once you have caught your flathead catfish it is time to clean it and cook it. Here’s how:
The head and internal organs should be removed from the fish. Rinse the fish with cold water and cut the fillets from the bones.
Flathead catfish can also be baked, fried, or grilled. They are delicious with butter, lemon, and herbs like rosemary and thyme.
Flathead catfish fishing can be a rewarding and exciting experience. You can increase your chances to catch a trophy-sized fish by using the right gear. Be patient and persistent and you will catch a flathead that will make your fishing trip memorable.