Catching River Catfish - what kind of bait do I use?

Discussion in 'Catfishing Baits' started by JMarrs328, Jan 1, 2006.

  1. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    I've been fish for catfish for about 6 mos. now. I fish in the Susquehanna River and a few of it's warmwater tributaries South of Harrisburgh, PA. I've caught a few cats on Nightcrawlers and chicken livers. Does anyone have any reliable standbys for river cats, areas to fish, baits. etc.?
     
  2. katfish hunter

    katfish hunter New Member

    Messages:
    105
    State:
    Jacksonville,FL.
    Yeah, find out what kind of fish the catfish naturally eat. Baits such as shad or shrimp are my favorite baits for river cats.
     

  3. Catcaller

    Catcaller New Member

    Messages:
    1,511
    State:
    SoutheastKansas
    What species are you after?

    No matter what species...you can't go wrong with perch or shad...live or cut. Nightcrawlers are the same way. Liver is good for channel and blues.

    A general rule to remember is this...Blues or channel either one will scavenge for their meal....but they will also eat live bait as well. Flathead prefer live bait...or freshly killed cut bait.
     
  4. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    My favorite bait for river cats flatheads and channels is cut shad, and cut sucker.
     
  5. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    I have seen a lot of shad in the area that i like to fish. I've been fishing very close to a warm water discharge area of a power plant. What are your suggestions on catching these shad. I've tried catching them on a line and hook but they don't bite.
     
  6. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    Get yourself a cheap castnet, thats about the only way to catch shad..If they are very thick you may be able to snag a few. Shad are plankton feeders so you wont have much luck trying to catch them with bait.
     
  7. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    Ohio
    ALSO.... Dont get discouraged, espically right now. Do Blues exsist is your river? You wont have any Flathead action right now, unless God himself is watcing out for you, but you should do well for Blues and Big Channels.
     
  8. rockbass

    rockbass New Member

    Messages:
    1,107
    State:
    Ohio
    All the normal baits will catch cats. Cut shad and chicken liver is my favs for channels and live gills or rockbass are my favs for flatties

    I had a period of time where the only flatties I was catching was on chicken liver, so go with whatever you can. I tend to get stuck on one bait at a time and know I miss out on some fish because of it
     
  9. loanwizard

    loanwizard Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,297
    State:
    Coshocton,
    If you are going for sheer numbers of fish, chicken liver has always been my favorite. That said, since i was turned on to live bait this past season, it is doubtful that I will ever again use anything but, unless i have the kids with me and need to catch some and in numbers. My favorites are live shad and live small bluegills. Although I used an awful lot of 9-12 inch bait and my average catch this year was over 5 pounds per fish including several 6-8 lb channels, and a 20 and 32 pound shovelhead. Good Luck and welcome to the fraternity.
     
  10. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    I fish near a warmwater discharge from a power plant this time of year. Last week a muskie fisherman pulled a 33lb. 6 ounce flathead out on a crankbait, right in front of me. I'll post the link to the picture when i remeber the website. lol
     
  11. JMarrs328

    JMarrs328 New Member

    Messages:
    471
    State:
    York/Harrisburg, PA
    As for Blues, I have only ever caught one. I was fishing for carp in a large creek w/ sweet corn when it hit. It was 27 inches long.
     
  12. rockbass

    rockbass New Member

    Messages:
    1,107
    State:
    Ohio
    That would be a pleasant surprise! Usally I get a carp when catfishing :rolleyes:
     
  13. nathan king

    nathan king New Member

    Messages:
    150
    State:
    vernon tx
    try punchbait i garuntee youll catch fish. when all else fails just punch it :cool:
     
  14. daystarchis

    daystarchis New Member

    Messages:
    11,521
    State:
    Clovis Cali
    I agree with Nathan. May I suggest Danny Kings Punch Bait. They are a sponsor of BOC. Liver, Alive or frozen shad, bluegill, crappie, mudsucker.... Be mobile and fish that punch bait!.