EDITOR/ SR. WRITER
ART/ CREATIVE DIRECTOR
Keith “Catfish” Sutton
John N. Felsher
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Front Cover/ Credit:
Blue Bank Resort head guide Billy Blakley shows the results of casting bait on a float up tight to the cypress trees on Reelfoot Lake. (Jeff Samsel Photo, courtesy of Thill)
Catfish Connections – Channel Cat Capers
Catching good numbers of channel catfish can be a fun family day in the outdoors. Most ponds, lakes, or rivers have these tasty catfish. Their abundance makes them a great starter fish for new anglers.
If you own or are allowed to fish a private pond that has been stocked with channels it can be a lot fun and close to home. Although I fish a lot of different public waters and catch them on almost all of them, fishing my pond is always a treat. A week ago, I caught my biggest to date from my backyard pond. It weighted just over 8 pounds.
It doesn’t require ultra-expensive gear or baits to catch these beautiful fish. I caught the 8-pounder on a B’n’M Poles TCB spinning rod and Pro 50 reel spooled with 6-pound test Gamma Fishing line. Small chunks of cut up hot dogs on a Tru-Turn hook, a small, pegged bobber, and no weight did the trick. I do advise you to make sure your drag is set so their runs are controlled without breaking your line.
Many baits work well for channel cats, including earthworms, minnows, and prepared catfish baits. Some days, even crickets work well, and it is always a good strategy to have more than one type available.
This edition of CatfishNOW offers several stories that highlight premier public destinations for catching super-sized channel catfish. Be sure to read them all and note the ways to catch them. Different types of public or private waters (i.e., rivers, impoundments, or ponds) fish differently so plan accordingly.
Channel cat fishing is a great way to introduce others to fishing. So, take a child or spouse fishing for channel cats and watch them light up when they catch them. Who knows, you just might hook another person on fishing.
Be safe and take a child fishing.
God Bless and Good Fishing!