Best baits for flathead catfish?

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by joe shmoe, Jul 15, 2007.

  1. joe shmoe

    joe shmoe New Member

    Messages:
    30
    State:
    sw pa
    what r the best baits for flatheads
     
  2. Moose1

    Moose1 New Member

    Messages:
    574
    State:
    STEUB, OHIO
    live bait. blue gill, shad, shinners, chubs, small carp,.

    elwood:wink::wink:
     

  3. Mickey

    Mickey New Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    14,592
    State:
    Illinois
    Elwood has told you right. I agree.:0a27::0a17:
     
  4. Bullhead61

    Bullhead61 New Member

    Messages:
    37
    State:
    Wisconsin
    10-12" suckers. Works for me.
     
  5. FATFLATTIE

    FATFLATTIE New Member

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    2,170
    State:
    ILM, NC
    Yeah, pretty much any local live bait. Although, don't be afraid to experiment with fresh cut bait either. The largest flathead I've ever caught came on cut bluegill.
     
  6. joe shmoe

    joe shmoe New Member

    Messages:
    30
    State:
    sw pa
    i was wondering is panfish legal in pa:confused2:
     
  7. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Panfish is legal!

    I've been having good luck on green sunfish lately.
     
  8. dragon86

    dragon86 New Member

    Messages:
    51
    State:
    west frankfort illinios
    i hear that small bullheads work good to but i mainly use live bluegill and such.
     
  9. Love Them Cats

    Love Them Cats New Member

    Messages:
    454
    State:
    Vinita, Oklahoma
    Last year, we were catching them on nightcrawlers.
    They were only around 5 - 6 pounds, but we caught them?

    I think a lot of it depends on where you are fishing and what they are used to eating in that area?

    Ken
     
  10. mattoonboy4

    mattoonboy4 New Member

    Messages:
    89
    State:
    Illinois
    i really like rock bass(some call em war mouth) cuz they stay alive forever. u can fish all night with one then take it off the hook and put it back in a live well until u go again. but blue gill work just as good. must be live tho.
     
  11. GUNTZ

    GUNTZ New Member

    Messages:
    169
    State:
    CLEBURNE texas
    BLUEGILL BLUEGILL BLUEGILL:roll_eyes:
     
  12. Goldenshinner

    Goldenshinner New Member

    I would experiment. its seems that bullheads seem to be overall the favored bait by many die hards on this board, but i would add to this disscussion that i have been present at ahh hmm. occasions that we experimented with several different baits. all presented at the same time. this was a large party with loads of lines out fishing side by side. on one particular water way we saw a definite preferance for sheephead. bullheads, suckers, and cubs were not taken. unfortunatly this particular river dosent have alot of flatties. but after several days of ALL the fish being caught on sheepies, i was convinced. this lasted afew weeks. then the pattern changed and all baits were taken. on this same subject i have met a guy that does very well using 2lb pike as bait. i have also seen big flaties caught on 3lb carp and tiny 4inch bullheads, and have met a couple of locals that successfully use sunfish roughly 1inch long!(on a hook twice that size!!!!). Localy we can occasionaly order big decoy sized suckers, one die hard pal of mine noticed a big increase in larger fish once he switched over to using large decoys suckers(12inchs or bigger sometimes up to 16inches) . big for us localy are 38-40lb+. and are caught with some regularity. realy big are the ones you cant even turn and break 50-80lb lines.

    but i think everyone will agree that if you want decient flatties, you need to use a live fish. be it a bluegill, bullhead or sucker.
     
  13. slikk03

    slikk03 New Member

    Messages:
    2,507
    State:
    illinois
    i did a little test on them sunfish , the flatts prefer those little dark green thik mouthed warmouth or rock bass, they are a little better that the thin paper liped yellow sun fish
     
  14. jbuck984

    jbuck984 New Member

    Messages:
    12
    State:
    Nebraska
    Whatever you use make sure its good and lively! I use bluegill because they are readily available here.
     
  15. rookie

    rookie New Member

    Messages:
    18
    State:
    Mt. Healthy, Ohio
    So far this year our most productive bait has been shad. We've tried bluegill, goldfish, carp, shiners and suckers.
     
  16. chris45601

    chris45601 New Member

    Messages:
    357
    State:
    ohio
    I'm gonna go with a Yellow belly with a two bars cut off, The dorsel and the left or right one. they swim a little destressed and they stay a live for a good long while
     
  17. stinkbaitman

    stinkbaitman New Member

    Messages:
    207
    State:
    south dakota
    live bait. blue gill, shad, shinners, chubs, small carp,.
    hes right -livebait-
     
  18. lebeaux

    lebeaux New Member

    Messages:
    152
    State:
    ohio
    See what bait is in the water you're fishing, some say.Elwood is right. Big goldfish are good too. Be sure to temper them. They're real sensitive to temp changes.The first flat I ever caught was on a big wad of crawlers. Weighed 20 or 25 lbs. Bullheads are good too. Sometimes they're not as easy to catch as sunfish. I usually use gills or sunfish. The bigger the better.Get a portable airator and keep it runnin'. Fresh water once in a while and they should live until youuse 'em or let 'em go in the AM:wink:
     
  19. fishinjunky

    fishinjunky Member

    Messages:
    267
    State:
    Nebraska
    all my flatheads this year have come off fresh cut bait while i was fishin for channels and blues.
     
  20. Polish Moose

    Polish Moose New Member

    Messages:
    54
    State:
    Illinois
    If it is alive and they can fit it in their mouth its a good bait! I don't know how much sense it makes for a predator to target specific types of forage and pass on others, they would have to burn more energy to be selective. Fish are lazy by nature, in their minds they have to quickly decide whether they want to expent a certain amount of energy to eat. If they burn more calories to catch a bait than it is going to bring in they probably won't do it.

    Being selective isn't efficient. Whatever is legal, readily available, and hearty makes the best bait in my mind. If you go too big though you will eliminate the opportunity to catch some fish. Tight lines.