A Newbie to Flathead catfish

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by JMarrs328, Jan 2, 2006.

  1. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    I've never caught a flathead bigger than a foot long. What are the best baits, rod setups, and locations for targeting this whiskered critter.
     
  2. vlparrish

    vlparrish New Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    State:
    Bedford, Kentucky
    Josh, I would go with at least a medium/heavy rod with "your" prefered style reel, be it spinning or casting big enough to hold plenty of 30# test line or larger. I would look for logjams, downed or standing timber, rockpiles or similar heavy structure and throw in a live bluegill hooked with at least a 5/0 J-style or circle hook. Hold on tight. Vern
     

  3. Ravensmavsfan

    Ravensmavsfan New Member

    Messages:
    202
    State:
    Cincinnati,OH
    Use at least 20-pound test

    Try Live bluegill and shad.

    Also try cutting the heads of of them and hooking them through the roof of there mouth out the front of there skull.

    Don't fish with any kind of stink bait or rotten things.

    Stick with live or freshly killed shad or bluegill.
     
  4. shortbus

    shortbus New Member

    Messages:
    459
    State:
    indiana
    I use med/heavy action rods, 40lb test line, PENN GTI 320 reels, 2 to 3 oz sinkers and 8/0 octopus hooks. I mainly use live bluegills about 3to6 inches long for bait. For location in rivers I look for big holes with any kind of structure in or around them. Fishing the outside of sharp bends in the river is a good location. Wherever the baitfish are you can almost bet the cats will be there.
     
  5. Pennsylvaniacatchaser

    Pennsylvaniacatchaser Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,359
    State:
    Sarver, Pa
    I agree with the previous posts. A medium/heavy action rod capable of tossing a couple ounces of lead and large size bait. A reel large/tough enough to handle 25# + test line. Rod length and reel type are your personal preference. Big live bait like Bluegills, suckers, large chubs & shad. Big hooks - Kahle, circle, J -style in sizes like 5/0, 6/0, 7/0, 8/0 depending on your bait size. You can find what you need on the catfish connection site.
     
  6. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    Along with the other comments which are great, all I have to add is to be paitent..Trophy Flatheads dont need to feed every night..It may take you several days even fishing prime water to catch one.
     
  7. Baitkiller

    Baitkiller New Member

    Messages:
    1,029
    State:
    Akron, Ohio
    JMarrs328

    I fish the Ohio River one mile from the PA line in East Liverpool, OH. JMarrs if you could update your profle on your city location I may be able to help ya out a bit more. :confused:

    Yes what all the guys have told you above.

    "Join in the pursuit
    <><Baitkiller><>
     
  8. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    I'm from south central PA so i don't think u'll be able to help much :sad:
     
  9. photocat

    photocat New Member

    Messages:
    803
    State:
    HOCO, Maryland
    Jmarr- What are you currently using for bait and your set up? just from your description of what your catching you may not be catching flatties, but instead bullheads but i could be wrong... its just what it sounds like...

    ummm your in the harrisburg/york area try to check in the PA area of the site to see who can help you out w/ finding a river that may have a higher concentration of flats... The members above have given you alot of good info on bait, tackle and such, listen to them and use their tips wisely...
     
  10. BIGBASS3638

    BIGBASS3638 New Member

    Messages:
    33
    you need a big ugly stick and 5000 garcia casting reel 50# line 2-5oz sinker and a big hook!!!!! cheap but strong!!! :cool:
     
  11. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,173
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    I have been successful with live bluegills,creek chubs, suckers, and large goldfish. Of course shad and skipjacks are always good choices of bait also.
    I fish the Ohio river mostly and concentrate on old retired barges along the banks, creek mouths with a lot of bottom structure are good locations.
     
  12. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    How do you hook the live fish on? Do you want it throught the tail, lips, back, or ......?
     
  13. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,173
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    I hook all mine just below the dorsal fin and back toward the tail. Flatheads are not hook shy, so leave plenty of hook exposed after running it through your bait. I usually use 8/0 and bigger hooks for live baits.
     
  14. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    So i guess that means a 3/0 is too small? And what size baitfish do u use?
     
  15. flat cat hunter

    flat cat hunter New Member

    Messages:
    6
    State:
    pittsburgh pa.
    you want to use blue gills around 3-7 inches long but anything under a foot isn't out of the question
     
  16. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    Alright, I really appreciate the help everyone :) ! Now i just have to go out a try some of this out!
     
  17. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    Before i do that, would a surf rod make a good flat head rod?
     
  18. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    If it would, i have an 8 ft. spinning combo surf rod that i use at the beach.
     
  19. Pennsylvaniacatchaser

    Pennsylvaniacatchaser Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,359
    State:
    Sarver, Pa
    JMarrs328 - Make sure when you put a Bluegill on the hook to remove any scales that are stuck on the point of the hook. If you don't remove the scales they will reduce your chances of a good hookset.
     
  20. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    Thanks for the response guys!!!!! :) :)