Catfish are known for their prominent whisker-like barbels and substantial size. You can find catfish in freshwater environments throughout the United States. Catfish are scavengers, and it takes a special approach to catch them with consistent success.
When to Fish
Spring through fall is catfish season. Catfish feed more heavily in the fall as they prepare for winter, increasing your chances of finding larger fish in the autumn months. While you can try your luck in the day, the best chance to catch catfish comes at night when they feed. Catfish tend to lurk in deep pools or hide beneath debris in the day. They generally come out after dark to scavenge. Be quiet and keep lighting to a minimum to avoid startling the catfish away. One of the best times to catch catfish is right after a heavy rain.
Where to Fish
You can find catfish in most rivers, lakes and creeks. Head to the mouth of a creek where it spills into a lake for prime fishing after a rain storm. Catfish tend to congregate around such areas because of all the insects and other food being flooded to the creek mouth after it rains. You can also try fishing around shallow banks in the spring when catfish spawn.
Catfish love smelly bait, especially if it is alive and squirming. The vibrations in the water caused by live bait attract catfish more effectively than dead bait. Use live and cut perch or shad as bait if possible. Use freshly cut baitfish if you decide to go with dead bait. Keep the cut baitfish on ice prior to fishing to preserve freshness. You can also use crawfish, shrimp or worms. Another excellent bait option is live grasshopper. If you don't want to use live bait, you can still utilize a particularly smelly bait to attract catfish. Try baiting your hook with chicken or beef livers. Chicken or beef hearts will do as well.
Article Written By David Thyberg
David Thyberg began his writing career in 2007. He is a professional writer, editor and translator. Thyberg has been published in various newspapers, websites and magazines. He enjoys writing about social issues, travel, music and sports. Thyberg holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pittsburgh Honors College with a certificate in Spanish and Latin American studies.