Biggest Catfish Ever Caught
I just though it would be interesting to put together a list of the largest catfish ever caught, blues and flatheads, to get an idea of the distribution and a general idea of what is possible. Iím more interested in the fish than the methods. A 100lb fish is still a 100lb fish, no matter how it was caught.
Blue Catfish (Over 105lbs)
124lbs 2005 Tim Pruitt, Mississippi River near St Louis
121lbs 2004 Cody Mullenix, Lake Texoma (Texas Side)
118lbs 1988 Dan Grider, Lake Texoma, Jug (Oklahoma Side)
117lbs 1964 Azel Goans, Osage River, Missouri, Trotline
116lbs 1995 John Harmon, Mississippi River near West Memphis Arkansas
113lbs 2008 Steve Oudomsouk, San Vincente California
112lbs 1998 Robert Lewis Cumberland River, Tennessee
111lbs 1996 William McKinley, Wheeler Lake Alabama
108lbs 2007 Cary Winchester, Mississippi River near Memphis
Note: Used 105lbs to keep the list a manageable size.
Flathead Catfish (Over 100lbs)
139lbs 1982 Bruce and Mackey Sayre, Arkansas River Arkansas Snagline
123lbs 1998 Ken Paulie Elk City Lake Kansas
106lbs 1977 C Clubb Wister Lake, Oklahoma, Trotline
I know Iíve missed some, maybe a bunch. This is off the top of my head, backed by just a little bit of Googling. Part of the reason for putting up the list is to get more input. Iíve heard of bigger blues caught commercially, but I couldnít find any verification. If you have information on a fish that should be on the list, please post it up and I will add it. There only thing I ask is that it be verifiable, with a solid weight and either a state certification or multiple witnesses, or other reliable criteria.
There are a lot of fish stories out there. I know of several who have caught fish that I personally believe would be on the listÖ. Radish, Virgil Agee, Matt Bingham. These guys did a great thing and released the fish without endangering them to get an accurate weight. If it was a list of fishermen, I would put these guys right at the top, but I just donít know where on the list to put their fish.
It looks to me like the big blue cat fisheries are improving and the flatheads fisheries are declining. Its been ten years since the Flathead record was broken and it seems like the bluecat record is broken every other year or so.
I wonder if it is because there are not as many people who target flatheads? Or that the ones who do are more descrete?
Or possibly because blues can be caught 12 months of the year while flatheads are primarily a warm water species?
Probably just a population difference.
Sorry I dont have any to add. I think you pretty well have it covered.
I think I need to move.:smile2:
I'd agree that the blue cat fishery is improving. I think less pressure from commercial fishing and increased distribution to places like California plays a role. The big flatheads, I think they have always been pretty rare. It's also possible they they are caught more often and just not reported, as they seem to be more susceptible to being caught on set lines than blues are.
Personally I think the reason that big blues are caught more often is b/c they are an open water fish for the most part. They relate more to structure than cover.
Flatheads on the other hand hang around the thick stuff. A 100lb+ flathead will also be in the nastiest snag in the entire body of water. Usually you're fishing in pretty close proximity to the snag. I guess what I'm saying is that 100lb flatheads are hooked probably just as often as 100+lb blues are you just ain't getting a 100lb flathead out of a snag, just not happening. I don't care if you're using a tuna stick if he's only gotta go a couple of feet he's gonna go. I seriously doubt that big flatheads aren't abundant (pretty much anywhere there's 80-100lb blues there's flatheads of equal size in that body of water if they exist there). They're out there, just much harder to get than a big blue if you ask me.
That and I believe that more people fish for blues, guide for blues, and tournament fish for blues than they do flatheads. It's easier to catch numbers of blues, and any serious flathead fisherman will tell ya that if you get 5 or more fish in a night you're doing pretty good. I just don't think it's as appealing sitting around ALL night waiting for just a couple of fish as it is going out and fishing during the day and being able to get on a school of blues.
Last edited by FATFLATTIE; 01-08-2009 at 03:05 PM.
- James(Joe) Friend
Originally Posted by arkrivercatman
The blue numbers are up so high in comparison because I have'nt been flathead fishing much lately.
Last edited by psychomekanik; 01-08-2009 at 04:06 PM.
One day, I hope to catch one that big. LOL
- John Young
I agree with this completely!!! The Big Flats are hiding all the time...until they come out breifly to eat something. Then right back into hiding they go. You just got to be at the right spot at the right time and have the right bait in just the right position, to entice a big flathead to bite. Blues on the other hand ....are a totally different breed. I think they are more active and always looking for that next meal. JMO!:cool2:
Originally Posted by FATFLATTIE
So John, I take it you're saying that big flatheads are harder to catch than big blues? Am I correct? :big_smile:
You both John and Wes are exactly right in my opinion. Overall, big flatheads are more of an ellusive fish than big blues. They are definetley a fish of there own.. rollo