Where to find the world largest catfish

There are some really large freshwater fish located all around the world. There is the Muskie that can grow some really large sizes but they dwarf in comparison to some of the world’s catfish. The catfish have some of the recorded largest fish in the entire planet. Since they are bottom feeders, they can avoid being caught much easier than other fish species. They also eat just about anything that is put in front of them which allows them to grow lager as well. Their life span is longer than other fish species and with this type of longevity, they have the potential to get really large. Every country has their own species of catfish which also makes them the most widely found species of all the freshwater fish in the world. So where do you go to find the world’s largest catfish? The following are some of the locations where world records have been set:

* Thailand – The Mekong giant catfish is thought to be the world’s largest of all the freshwater species. In May of 2005 one of this large fish was caught in northern Thailand that weighed a whopping six hundred and forty six pounds and measured almost nine feet long. It is on the list of highly endangered species and this particular fish was to be released back in the wild after taking the eggs for a captive breeding program in order to help generate more of the species. The reason this species of fish is becoming extinct is there is a damn that was built on the Mekong River where the fish are naturally found.
Unfortunately, the catfish passed away before it could be released and was butchered to feed the people of the area. The people of Thailand consider this to be a sacred fish because they feel that the fish meditate in the same way that the monks do and they are a vegetarian species just as the monks. Eating the flesh of this behemoth is said to give the consumer good luck.
* Athens, Texas – The largest blue catfish ever landed was caught in Lake Texoma on the Texas side of the lake. This area is located in Athens, Texas and the fish was wrestled to shore by two young men. They kept the fish alive by pouring water over it to keep it hydrated. This was taken to the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center where the fish was transplanted and was seen by those who were interested in the fish. The female blue catfish was also given the name of Splash and she was certified in the same year, 2004 as the world record largest blue catfish weighing in at over a hundred and twenty pounds. On her one year anniversary at the aquarium, school children brought her cards and a local store donated a six foot cake that was enjoyed by the visitors that came to celebrate the anniversary. She passed away in 2005 while on display in the aquarium she was residing in.
* Barcelona, Spain – The largest catfish ever caught in Spain was caught by a British woman who is sight impaired. The fish weighed over ninety seven kilograms or two hundred and fifteen pounds. Not only was it the largest catfish caught in Spain, but it was the largest fish of any species landed there and now the woman and the fish both can be found in the Guinness Book of World Records. The fish was caught in the Ebro River and it took a half an hour to bring it in. She had the help of her son and husband and after photos were taken and the cat weighed, the fish was released back into the water. It took three people to lift it up because of the sheer enormity in size and weight.

There are many other species of catfish that can get just as large as some of the ones listed here. The reason that they have not been included is because there is no record of any of them being caught so they have not been included. This list deals strictly with the largest catfish that have been caught in the world by anglers or by netting as with the first example from Thailand. There are many myths in the fishing world of catfish that are even larger than the Mekong but with no proof there is no reason to include them. There is a lake in Africa that does hold four large species of catfish and there are many areas in the Amazon that are known for monsters as well. The largest catches in these areas have never been recorded though it is widely known that they do exist that they are not legend or myth. Dealing with myths is better left for those who want to read about them.


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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