Tips For Catching Catfish At Night

Any tips for catching catfish at night?

The nighttime is the right time to catch catfish, especially during the summer.  During the summer months, the daytime heat pushes catfish to the bottom, and they’ll spend the evenings closer to the surface looking for food. 

Evening is the best time to catch catfish, because that is when they are out feeding.  But, one of the great thing about cats is that they are around pretty much any time of day, so late night or early morning, you can do pretty well catching cats.

You’ll need some kind of light for nighttime catfishing.  Catfish seem to be particularly sensitive to light, probably because of their eyes, which are used to seeing what’s around on the bottom of the lake.  I would recommend buying a very small light, and using it sparingly.

Now, there’s an ongoing debate among nighttime fishermen about the effect the moon has on catfish.  Some will tell you that the fishing is best when there is no moon; others will say a full moon is the best time to look for catfish.  I would say that the moon probably does have some effect on their feeding patterns, but it’s tough to say exactly what.  I recommend fishing at different times of the moon phase, and see what works best.  It probably depends a little on location anyway.

For nighttime bait, I would use something especially stinky, like chicken liver or live bait.  As you might imagine, they don’t see as well at night, so stuff like worms won’t work as well. 

I highly recommend catfishing at night, and I’m sure lots of anglers would agree with me that nighttime is when you catch the big ones!


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

One Response to “Tips For Catching Catfish At Night”

  1. Joe says:

    I’ve heard that you can chum for channel cats using corn. Do you think corn would be good chum? How would I use with it?

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