Baits and Lures
Baits that are effective for luring catfish in the Louisiana waters include cold worms, cut bait, chicken livers, cheese baits and minnows, according to the Louisiana Game and Fish Magazine. Use those baits when casting fishing lines off the banks, and soon the catfish will be striking. Other lures to try include congealed blood, fish guts, red wigglers, catalpa worms, Canadian night crawlers, crickets and crawfish. Luring catfish, especially channels, is quite effective with stinkbaits.
Catfish is abundant in all of the bayou state's waters from border to border. The four main types of catfish that inhabit Louisiana waters are channel, bullhead, flathead and blue. Some of the most productive fishing grounds include the 3,000-acre Lake Bruin of Lake Bruin State Park, Atchafalaya River and Lake D'Arbonne. Lake Bruin holds a teeming population of channel catfish, making it a popular target especially during the summer, says fisheries biologist Mike Ewing of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.
Louisiana allows a variety of angling techniques when catching catfish, including the use of rod and reel, noodling, snagging, trapping and trotlining. During spring, catch catfish by snagging them in the state's rivers around dams and locks. Snagging is a legal method that applies to catfish only as of June 2010. Spring is an ideal time to snag because catfish move upstream to spawn and typically congregate at locks. Use outsized treble hooks to snare catfish. Another effective method is trotlining. When trotlining, suspend your lines far beneath floats to prevent them from getting entangled in motorboat propellers. Bait with a variety of lures when using this method to catch the most catfish.