Fishing for Channel Catfish

Your Gear

Channel catfish do require a bit of planning for a good catch. You will find that most of these fish are small, usually from two to four pounds in weight, depending on their location. You will not likely find them larger than ten pounds in most areas. With that said, though, they do have the ability to grow to huge weights (as some recent records have shown) even as large as 60 pounds in weight. What does this mean for your equipment, then?

Be sure that whatever you bring with you is strong enough to hold onto these fish. Do plan to reel in the big one every time. For bait, it is strongly recommended that you forget about artificial bait. They simply will not take it most of the time. Instead, channel catfish are going to want live bait. This is due to the fact that these fish do not use their eyesight to help them to find food but rather use their very good sense of smell. Nothing artificial will appeal to them. Do look for live bait that does smell strongly (though not so much so that it is rotting of course.) Choose bait that has some aroma that will attract the catfish. Good choices for many channel fish include chicken livers, night crawlers, other fresh fish, and pieces of shad.
Other Methods

If you are interested in finding some unique ways to fish for channel catfish, go for it. Standard methods of fishing do not have to be used to attract this fish. In fact, you will find that commercial fishermen will use a variety of methods in the same region to attract catfish. You can use trotlines to catch channel fish or go with hoop nets, too. Noodling is another option where it is located. Do take the time to find out what is allowable in the region that you plan to fish, first.

Channel catfish are excellent choices because they are excellent in taste. Take your time with these guys because they can be an excellent fish to bring home. In some areas, regulations on daily limits and size limitations are in place. Find out what they are prior to setting out for your channel catfish.

To get the full “Fishing for Channel Catfish” article you’ll need to download it here.


Dan Eggertsen is a fellow catfish fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on catfish fishing since 2004.

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