Catfish

If you want to discuss Catfish, Perch, Zander, Ferox Trout or Eels, this is the place for you
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Richard.
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Catfish

Post by Richard. » Wed Mar 24 2021 10:53

Being invited to a well stocked still water to catch my first ever catfish next month. One could probably say the venue is ideal for beginners as there is plenty of smaller (10-20lb) cats in it and from what I’m told the largest one known in there doesn’t exceed 40lb. This is good because I don’t intend to break any records here just have a bit of fun. Obviously it’s been the top of my Google search list to gather information on this fish and how best to catch them.
Now fish safety is my number one priority so I’m particularly interested in your opinions on hook link material and rig design to ensure my rigs are cat safe.
I’m also interested in ensuring if anything takes my bait it’s going to be the dedicated species so I’m trying to avoid boilies and pellets unless advised otherwise of course. (lives not an option)
It’s not going to be a night session just maybe into dusk/dark so daytime tips that one might want to share would be good.
I don’t have dedicated cat rods but I have got a pair of old reasonably powerful pike rods which I hope works for the stamp of fish in this particular venue. I think they are 12foot 3lbtc progressive action. I haven’t hooked a cat before to my knowledge but I’m aware from research they know how to put tackle through its paces.
Oh and one last thing. I’ve seen people use these dumbbell rigs to support baits under the surface. Is that worth a go in the day time? Looks a quite involved rig but I’m happy to learn these things if it will increase my chances.
Thanks again gents. Appreciate any feedback.
Rich.

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Happy Hayes
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Re: Catfis

Post by Happy Hayes » Thu Mar 25 2021 00:16

Hi Rich
Your Rods will cope for the size of fish in the water chosen.
As for bait don’t ignore boilies or pellets if carp are present they’ll be use To hoovering them up .
You can double up on both baits ,two or three 20mm boilies or pellets will easily be devoured by a catfish .
Depending on the water your fishing , squid can be a good bait as can a dead bait .
If the fish are up in the water you could also have a go at using a zig rig ( been successful on one water I know consistently)
Or suspended a bait under a dumbbell .
I normally use a free running rig , as for hook length I use several, some are the coated braids in the higher breaking strains but i mainly use the catfish pro and cat Master hook lengths.
I use braided main line so before the hook length I have a metre of tubing, I mainly use rig morale which is a soft but heavy rig tube ,this serves two purposes one to hug the bottom the other to protect the fish if it was to roll up the braid prevent it from getting cut ( never happened yet but who knows ) if not a standard rig tube will suffice .
As for the fight off a catfish, you’ll never look back . Enjoy
Regards
Tom

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John Milford
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Re: Catfish

Post by John Milford » Thu Mar 25 2021 01:14

Tom has pretty much covered everything and is spot on. :thumbs:

The only thing to add are large diameter, very smooth run rings to minimise resistance.

. . . . . and wear old clothes, because if you have a good session they will only be fit for burning afterwards! (You'll see. :wink: ).
"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Catfish

Post by suffolk si » Thu Mar 25 2021 09:01

Agree with what the other guys have said. I would also think about getting a fifty inch net, even a forty will be very long and a bigger net will make netting easier, especially if you are alone 👍. My preferred baits are suspended lives, boilies/ pellets and big bunches of lobworms , in that order👍

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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Thu Mar 25 2021 13:25

Gents this is absolutely excellent information thank you very much. Tom, great post. I appreciate the time taken to help me out.
Rig tube never crossed my mind actually but my reels are also loaded with very strong braid. Do you use the tube for other species too then like pike? I’ll make sure I get some.
Do I just stop it going up the line with a stop knott?

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Re: Catfish

Post by Fentiger01 » Thu Mar 25 2021 13:43

Looking forward to hearing how you get on Richard. :thumbs:
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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Thu Mar 25 2021 14:05

Fentiger01 wrote:
Looking forward to hearing how you get on Richard. :thumbs:
Thanks Mate.
I’ll be sure to update the thread. My booked date is April 16th so I’m making afew purchases now. I’m a full time barbel angler mostly and my typical rigs are 15lb coated braid to size 10 hooks so I’m hoping to keep things familiar and simple I can use a similar rig design (obviously shorter) but just step everything up dramatically.
If I get just one even a small one then as far as I’m concerned the day was successful.

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Re: Catfish

Post by Paul Wiffen » Thu Mar 25 2021 22:12

Get onto the CCG website, maybe join (£18) and ask away.
You'll need strong reels.

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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Thu Mar 25 2021 22:25

Paul Wiffen wrote:
Get onto the CCG website, maybe join (£18) and ask away.
You'll need strong reels.
Cheers Paul.

Got a pair 8000 OC reels
I’ve got not concerns they’ll be up for the job.

Catfish Paul
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Re: Catfish

Post by Catfish Paul » Thu Mar 25 2021 22:38

Hi Richard

I agree with what everyone else has written especially about using rig tubing if your main line is braid.
During the fight with a cat, they slap the line momentarily with their tail. Feels like the cat has just pinged off your hook then the rod hoops back over and they are on!!
This is why you need the rig tubing because cats can get cut quite deeply on braid when it's under pressure.

Bait wise luncheon meat is a great early season bait.

I don't know where you are fishing but a lot of cat lakes are rather small. Plus they can get busy. If this is the case, When you get a take, clamp down hard because if you get a decent cat on and it gets a turn of speed up, you risk taking out other lines which could mean you lose your fish.

They are a great species, frustrating at times but boy will they pull your string.

Enjoy , have fun and catch a whopper 👍

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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Fri Mar 26 2021 13:52

Catfish Paul wrote:
Hi Richard

I agree with what everyone else has written especially about using rig tubing if your main line is braid.
During the fight with a cat, they slap the line momentarily with their tail. Feels like the cat has just pinged off your hook then the rod hoops back over and they are on!!
This is why you need the rig tubing because cats can get cut quite deeply on braid when it's under pressure.

Bait wise luncheon meat is a great early season bait.

I don't know where you are fishing but a lot of cat lakes are rather small. Plus they can get busy. If this is the case, When you get a take, clamp down hard because if you get a decent cat on and it gets a turn of speed up, you risk taking out other lines which could mean you lose your fish.

They are a great species, frustrating at times but boy will they pull your string.

Enjoy , have fun and catch a whopper 👍
Hey Paul. Thanks for the post.
I am definitely going to be using rig tube on my main braid. I’m very glad I posted here because I didn’t get that information from other resources I was looking into and I absolutely want to return my captures without any unnecessary harm at all. I only use the word unnecessary because there’s always some degree of harm the moment your hook makes contact.
Ref the lake itself it actually looks like the two of us may end up getting the venue to ourselves. They only take bookings there via a day ticket and from what I’ve been told we are the only ones booked on that day. (Picked a week day to keep it as quiet as possible). Obviously that could change and your advice of keeping things locked up will certainly be taken.
Luncheon meat!!! Yeah I didn’t think about that. Being a barbel angler I know this bait all too well. I’ll be taking some of that. Bloody hope the peg isn’t too far from the car :dizzy: never had so much kit to sort out.
Net I’ve got is a 42 very deep triangle and that’s going to have to be suitable as I don’t have access to bigger. Unhooking Mat!! I have 3 around 36 inch long. But put together these stretch 60 inches so I’ll be ok on that front aswell.
My plan is go with as much as I have already if it can be done safely and should I get the bug for it which I’m sure is going to happen then I’ll start making some investment in the dedicated tackle.
If I can’t do it safely now with what I’ve got to hand the obviously I will make necessary purchases for this trip also.

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Happy Hayes
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Re: Catfish

Post by Happy Hayes » Sat Mar 27 2021 00:20

Hi Rich
it sounds as though you’ve got most things covered for your first trip .
As for fishing locked up the only advice I’ll give is don’t turn your back on the rods
If a cat takes off it’s like hooking a torpedo .
I fish a small water quite regularly it’s my bogey water ,most of the time if someone hooks into a cat the swims nearest reel in
It saves everyone getting tangled.
Fingers crossed you’ll have one ,and if you do ,the fish won’t be the only thing hooked
Regards
Tom

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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Sat Apr 17 2021 08:24

Thread update.
Yesterday was the trip day but unfortunately it resulted in a blank for all 4 of us. We had the entire lake to our selves for 12 hours, 10 rods between us and not a single sniff.
Oh well I’m give it another go but I’ll book a night ticket. They should be more active then.

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Happy Hayes
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Re: Catfish

Post by Happy Hayes » Sun Apr 18 2021 21:58

Hi Richard
3 of us were out Friday
I new it would be hard going for the Cats as there was a heavy frost in the morning
I wasn’t wrong,the whole lake only produced one bream ,a small carp and a mid twenty cat ( The cat to my friend)
Hopefully the weather will be more settled before your next trip .
Regards
Tom

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Re: Catfish

Post by suffolk si » Sun Apr 18 2021 22:44

Like tom says👍. in my relatively limited experience, really cold nights are a kiss of death. I won’t be going until nights are staying up towards double figures.

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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Sun Apr 18 2021 22:45

Yeah hard frost here Thursday night also but Friday did turn out to be a lovely day i thought they might switch on but never happened unfortunately.
It’ll take more than a blank to put me off catching my first cat mind. I fish some exceptionally difficult southern rivers for specimen barbel throughout the year so blanking and putting in the hard work is a big part of my fishing.

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Re: Catfish

Post by rapsy » Mon Apr 19 2021 09:53

.
Never hold discussions with the monkey when the organ grinder is in the room.

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Re: Catfish

Post by Crackoff » Wed Apr 21 2021 22:37

They don't 1/2 pull your string and bend your stick :thumbs:

Grant :smile:
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Mark Phillips
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Re: Catfish

Post by Mark Phillips » Sat Apr 24 2021 23:30

I had a bash yesterday, my first trip of the year - no point fishing nights this time of year IMO, in fact, I find on most (not all) waters, catfishing is way more productive in daylight. I got there at 7am and had two, one at 11am and the other just after 1pm (41 and 37). Both on meat baits, they didn't fight that hard and were a slightly leached up. From what I know, I think they're the first two out of the lake this year. Right time, right place I guess. I usually start at the end of March, but left it a bit later due to the water temps staying low. Once you get the first few, others follow and quickly things come alive. I'll be back next week for another day session - hopefully some of the lake's biggies will be active next time out. Varies from water to water of course, but if you're out now, my advice would be to do days only, use meat or squid (lives if allowed) and try to go on the brighter/warmer days. We're now in the zone and as I find every year, the best catfishing is usually early to mid May...
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Re: Catfish

Post by suffolk si » Sun Apr 25 2021 08:24

Contemplating a trip next week, nights still down to freezing point this week around here and clear high pressure, should be changing this week though. I agree with Mark late April / early may normally my most productive time of year👍

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Mark Phillips
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Re: Catfish

Post by Mark Phillips » Mon Apr 26 2021 12:37

Next week? Hmmm. It's a Bank Holiday, so I expect everywhere to get battered next week. From what I am seeing, the world and his wife are planning a trip next week! Most waters I fish for cats fish very poorly when they're busy. I'll try to do another day this week for cats and leave the first longer session for w/c 10th May - banks will be a lot quieter, so should be able to fish where I want and the moon phase is perfect, an added bonus. May as well stack the odds in my favour.
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Re: Catfish

Post by suffolk si » Mon Apr 26 2021 13:09

Mark Phillips wrote:
Next week? Hmmm. It's a Bank Holiday, so I expect everywhere to get battered next week. From what I am seeing, the world and his wife are planning a trip next week! Most waters I fish for cats fish very poorly when they're busy. I'll try to do another day this week for cats and leave the first longer session for w/c 10th May - banks will be a lot quieter, so should be able to fish where I want and the moon phase is perfect, an added bonus. May as well stack the odds in my favour.
luckily the water i usually fish has very,very limited numbers of anglers allowed, the day other ticket ones i occasionally fish will be rammed, my buddy had a brace of forties and a thirty at weekend, still too cold for my liking at night, wouldnt want to get up in minus 2 and get covered in catfish poo !

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Re: Catfish

Post by Richard. » Tue Apr 27 2021 11:27

Yep bank holiday weekend is going to be mental most places so I’ll certainly be giving it a miss. You’ve also got all extra traffic with the river anglers (like me) pulling their hair out and dabbling with these holes in the ground occasionally.
I have recently landed on a lovely little syndicate lake with extremely limited members. It’s got some big carp in it if that’s your thing but it’s also got some cracking tench in it which is more my thing. I had 4 out to 6lb last Sunday evening on light float tactics and the best thing was me and a mate had the lake to ourselves.... on a Sunday :yahoo:

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