Finding flathead catfish

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by ken_hawk, Feb 4, 2007.

  1. ken_hawk

    ken_hawk New Member

    Halstead, Kansas
    Hey guys. I haven't been able to find many flatheads in the river and creek i fish in my town. its a small river and the creek is fairly small too. i know about fishing near log jams and at dropoffs and such, but where else might i try? the creek is almost never fished and when the river rises the fish head up the creek that runs into the river, so i know there are some good fish there. the water isn't very deep, 6' at most. what other types of structure should i look for?
  2. james_s333

    james_s333 New Member

    you might want to try around any dikes that have deep waters along them

  3. poisonpits

    poisonpits Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    ken something that works fairly well in small rivers and creeks is 2 poles.put a 3 to 5 inch perch right up against the cover you are going to fish.then take your 2nd pole and bait it with a large wad of this pole about 5 to 6 foot upstream of your pearch.when the small fish attacks your nitecrawlers they will chum that flathead to to your pearch then hang sometimesthey take the nitecrawlers
  4. catgetter1

    catgetter1 New Member

    First I gotta say Welcome aboard Johnie (poisonpits) like your ideas and am gonna have ta try that trick out....Once again welcome to the BOC see ya on the site.....
  5. s_man

    s_man New Member

    south east ohio
    You are either fishing places that everybody else fishes too or you just gotta put more time in on the water. They don't feed every day, they might be in there and just weren't hitting that day. Find places farther away from town. Get some maps and drive around right now whilor the leaves are gone, see how close to some of the river bends you can get then ask the farmer that owns that land if you can fish his stretch. Or get a boat and scout. Flatheads will be in those logs and deep bend holes, under lowhead dams, Also rocky bluffs with rubble on the river bottom. Just keep at it. Spring is the best time for numbers and big ones. Soon as the water gets over 50 degrees you should be out there. Fish close to the bank, thats where the bait fish are.
  6. Tiny

    Tiny New Member

    flathead are more of a resident fish instead of a migratory type fish like a bluecat where they are out in open water and on the move all the time. when flatheads find the right spot with good structure and food then they're liable to stay there for a long time. with them not moving around so much it's a matter of fishing pressure a lot of times ... some lakes or rivers don't provide a lot of good holding structure and the best way to find good flathead fishing areas is to go where there's not a lot of people that fish. like canoe or kayak up small rivers to areas that don't have any roads within a few miles or public access. usually anything that'll hold a lot of crappie or bluegill will have a flathead come through ... I used to fish crappie structure almost exclusively back in the 80s and did well that way.

    flathead will pass up baits as well. there may be flathead where you're fishing and just not interested in the offering as they may not view it as catchable. I think they spend a lot of time chasing baits and baits that have been hit by channels will attract flathead's attention before any other baits ... channelcat love bluegill as I've caught a lot of nice channels when flathead fishing and channels will hit bluegill that's too large for them to get in their mouths all the way. they'll knock the scales off them ... the bite of the channelcat is very powerful and most of the time they kill any bluegill hey hit but some escape with just scales missing. flathead will taste this or sense it somehow .. I'm not sure how they do but they'll home in on a scaled blugill faster than they will one that's not scaled ... I think the bluegill's skin lets out a fluid or something when they've had their scales knocked off and the flathead pick up on this.

    A friend of mine was fishing below keystone dam for flathead and they were in there but he wasn't catching any ... I showed up and he said he'd been there all day and hadn't even gotten a bite ... I asked if he was scaling the bluegill a little and he said no so I had him pick his bait up and I scaled it a little bit on both sides and he through it back out there and in less than 5 minutes he caught a little 15 lb flathead .. he caught 4 within an hour after he started scaling them. my boy had caught probably 15 to 20 that few weeks in that same spot he was fishing by scaling the bluegill ... anyone else fishing that little hole by the retainer wall that didn't scale their bait never caught any that we seen. the flood gates were open for a few weeks and the flood water was rushing past that retainer wall and the shad were schooling up real thick right there and with the flood water the flathead were pushed over there as well as there wasn't nearly as much current right there and it was creating a pretty big current eddy. some people caught flathead right there using cut shad also. not very many though.

    when you find good wood structure on some good holes up or down river where there's not a lot of people fishing you'll probably find some good flathead. you may have to walk along the river quite a ways to find areas like this but it'd be worth getting away from the more public areas as there's always more fish in secluded areas that has little or no fishing pressure.

    a friend of mine kayaks up the cimarron into areas that haven't ever had fishermen and he catches a lot of nice flathead on crankbaits ... they're a lot easier to find in those type areas. other than that you can locate crappie structure and there's usually a flathead or two that'll come through there looking for food.
  7. CaTmAnDo55

    CaTmAnDo55 New Member

    florence, SC
    welcome to the BOC i fish one small creek around my area and i use a lot of different baits and the one that works the best for me is chicken livers everytime i go i usually catch between 3-5 in about 1-2 hours in the 3-10lb range icant say why but it just seems that in the spot i fish thats all they bite ongive it a shot and thats fishing off the bank on a sharp bend with a grass bed on the outside of the bend thats my honeyhole