Flathead Bank Fishing Savy

Discussion in 'Catfishing Library' started by wolfman, Feb 28, 2008.

  1. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,081
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    Just wanted to share a few characteristic consistantcies from my experience fishing for flatheads from the bank. Let me start by saying all this took place in one area of the upper Ohio River when I lived in West Virginia. There was 2 bank spots that I fished knowing that both held flatheads most of the time. The first spot is a creek mouth that empties into the Ohio and I fished a point off that mouth on the down current side. The other was a retired abandoned barge up against the bank that I would fish the down current end of the barge that served as a current break. The following observations produced flatheads for me about the same each year in the same exact spots.

    Live bluegills worked well here most of the time but noticed it was after the sun set that I would catch a few throughout the night, some nights up to 7 or 8 flatheads out of the same spot. The bite would be good for about half hour then stop and pick back up about 1 to 2 hours later. This timing pattern was pretty much consistant all night long. I then started to fish this spot during daylight hours and didnt have much luck until one afternoon, I tried a cut bluegill head. Bingo, yes, you can catch flatheads during the day. I then planned my outings to fish late afternoons into the evening and would catch a couple before dark on cut bluegills, cut suckers and creek chubs, then nothing after darkness. So I would change to live gills,suckers and creek chubs, and would start getting hits like before. Dont know why, just learned that it worked. Also, found that high water conditions produced bigger flatheads better than low water or normal pool conditions.

    Another observation that I noticed from the same two spots was you can catch flatheads during all moon phases. The one consistant thing here was that I would catch more flatheads on the darker nights, but on a full moon would usually catch bigger flatheads, just not as many and bites are few and far between.

    During the spawn the bite would slow down dramatically and I would be catching nothing but smaller flatheads most of the time, and the preferred bait was cut baits during this time both day and night. I would often catch a lot of nice channel cats on bluegill heads during this period. I knew the spawn would be nearing the end when I would start to catch the larger flatheads that were females with bruises on them. They would hit in deeper water than before the spawn. It was explained to me that the bruises were caused by the males bumping the females off the nest and he would guard the nest for the remainder of the spawn.

    After the spawn and from late summer to early fall, the flatheads became more active. They preferred the live baits once again, similar to before the spawn only more aggresive. Again flathead fishing was the best during high water conditions. This was my favorite time of year for flathead fishing.

    Keep in mind this is just one particular geographic area that I fished and realize these observations might not be the same in your area and waters. Just wanted to share a few consistantcies characteristics and patterns from my experience. Good luck and Git-R-Done.