Flathead Catfish Help?

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by crazychuy, May 11, 2006.

  1. crazychuy

    crazychuy New Member

    Messages:
    92
    State:
    Southern California
    Hey Guys and Gals,

    I'm new to the BOC as you can tell and was wondering if there is any good books or videos that would help me understand and fish for Flatties?

    Over here in California we have alot of big lakes with Blues and Channels but the only place for Flatties is the Colorado River and don't want to look too wet behind the ears when I go down there this summer, if you know what I mean.

    Any suggestions or recommendations would be greatly appreciated from a fellow brother.

    CHUY (pronounced "CHEWIE")
     
  2. BigCat72

    BigCat72 New Member

    Messages:
    337
    State:
    OHIO
    The best videos I have got over the years that have helped me have been from in-fisherman, you can go to there site and see all they have and also get them from catfish connection, which i think has a better price on them.
     

  3. crazychuy

    crazychuy New Member

    Messages:
    92
    State:
    Southern California
    Hey John,

    Thanks for the advice. Sometimes I think I'm a pain because I ask so many questions. It's just that I love the sport and just want to become better. No body can become the best but it's fun to try.

    CHUY
     
  4. loki1982

    loki1982 New Member

    Messages:
    420
    State:
    Texas
    Im not familar with any videos but here are a few of the more common tips for flatheads

    1. They are alittle different than the other catfish species. One different is they are rarely ever caught on artifical baits(liver,doughbaits,bloodbaits). Things they are generally caught on are live fish, dead fish, worms, and occassionally on lures used for bass. By far, or so it seems live perch is the most commonly used bait, with live shad, cut perch, and other cuts baits being the next. Make sure you check the regulations in the state you'll be fishing becuase I think I remember reading that california doesnt allow the use of live perch? Also some states dont allow you to catch bait and use it in another location. So just check your regulations.

    2. Flatheads are extremely structure oriented. Trees, rocks, deep holes are your primary locations for finding flatheads.

    3. Flatheads are the most active during the night. I would guess 75% of flathead are caught during the night, just a guess though.

    4. Have gear ready to handle a big fish. If you hook into a flathead chances are your going to get aleast a decent fish. Be prepared to catch fish that might be up to 50# or more.

    5. And some personal advice. Flatheads have been the hardest species for me to catch. Ive only caught 1 flathead in about 18 years of fishing. Some people catch them regularly and others dont, so dont get discouraged if you cant catch one. Your area might not have a good populaiton of flatheads, they might be overfished, they might still be in spawn, they might not be in the area your fishing, or just just might not be feeding the night you fish.
     
  5. loki1982

    loki1982 New Member

    Messages:
    420
    State:
    Texas
    Oh and one other thing. Big catfish are rare, if they are takin out of the water they dont reproduce. Experts estimate it takes years(some say anywhere from 25-100) years for a catfish to reach record sizes. If you catch a big fish practice CPR(catch, picture,release). Everyone has a different opinion on what size should be kept or released you make good judgement call. Personally I set my limit at around 15# when we are low on meat, and around 7-8 when have fish at home.
     
  6. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    Paitence in the key to flathead fishing, along with finding proper locations...On Medium sized river I always check the bends frist..and just because you find a deep hole, if there is no structure there will be few flatheads..Look for downed trees in the water, even if the depth is only 10 ft or so flatheads will prefer that over a deep hole with no structure.

    I fished alot for flathead last year, probably made 20 trips and only caught 14 flatheads, so be prepared for long waits with no fish..But when you do catch a good one it will be worth it.

    I made a big mistake a few years ago, I found a extremly deep hole on the river I fish..I fished it all spring summer and fall, and only caught two flatheads, why? because the hole was devoid of any type of structure.
     
  7. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,222
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    When looking for a spot to fish, keep in mind that the river is a conveyor belt for food. River flatheads stay where they can peruse this moving smorgasbord without much effort. You will find the flatheads around obstructions that break the force of the current. Such places include the upstream faces of wing dikes and the ends of sand bars sticking out into the channel. The slack water below wing dikes also can produce good fishing.
    Shallow flats between islands and the main river channel can be fantastic fishing spots. During the day, fish patrol ledges where 3- to 4-foot water drops off to greater depth. The fish move up into the shallow water each night to forage.
    The availability of current-washed food makes eddies and sheltered areas along the outside of river bends superb for fishing. The upper and lower ends of side channels behind islands often attract large numbers of fish, too. River banks covered with rocks (riprap) are good places to drift live baitfish at night.
    Pay attention to the location of sand bars and other high spots in the river channel when the river is down. Visit these places when rising water covers them with slow-moving water.
    In general, fishing is best when the river is rising, worst when it is falling.
     
  8. bluehunter

    bluehunter New Member

    Messages:
    3,004
    State:
    Los Angele
    Great info wolfman. That one thing that I am learning as well. My last flatheads came off of a break in current in shallow water. We had to search for a while until we came across that but they were there as soon as night fell.
     
  9. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    I don't want to sound like an infomercial for In-fisherman but they give the best how-to info on catching cats that I've seen or read. I have 3 of their books, Catfish fever, and two in the Critical Concepts series for catfish, I and II plus I get the catfish In-sider guide thats published each spring. Also I get my monthly subscription to the magazine that has at least one article on catfishing each issue. I have all the catfishing videos they have, all are top notch. Before I ever found the BOC these guys had me catching fish. Start with catfish fever it is mainly a channel cat book with a little flathead stuff. But it has so much info in it that translates over to flatheads that you can't pass it up.
     
  10. crazychuy

    crazychuy New Member

    Messages:
    92
    State:
    Southern California
    Hey Guys,

    Thanks for all of the information. I feel like a gian sponge right now. I love to soak in information about something that I love so much as I do catfishing. I really think that the BOC is the next best thing to Catfishing, next to the might Flathead, or course.

    "S-Man" thanks for the info. I was going to ask you if you had to choose just one of there videos which would you choose. Thanks for the recommendation. I'm definetly going to have to get that one. I watch a portable DVD player when I'm fishing. So that will hold me over until the next bite.

    CHUY
     
  11. Baitkiller

    Baitkiller New Member

    Messages:
    1,029
    State:
    Akron, Ohio
    Are there Shad in that there river plz?? If yes get some to put on ice as fresh as possible for cut bait.

    Opinion: Look for slack water with lots and lots of stucture & they will bite during the day.


    Have heavy gear.
     
  12. blindfly69

    blindfly69 New Member

    Messages:
    774
    State:
    kentucky
    for flats you want live baits and big baits like a fat shad or bluegill or goldfish swimmn on the bottom all work but i would never use cut bait for flatheads. they're predators and like live bait more than anything
     
  13. crazychuy

    crazychuy New Member

    Messages:
    92
    State:
    Southern California
    Thanks for all of the help brothers. They don't have shad in the river. The preferred baits in the River is either caught bluegills or store bought goldfish. So would you say if there is a sheltered bay along the river that has alot of slack water and is covered in tules and weeds and shallow water you would say that is a good place to fish for Flatties during the day?

    CHUY
     
  14. river scum

    river scum New Member

    Messages:
    3,474
    State:
    hooterville indiana

    nate you mite want to try cutting your bait next time you go. we caught more flats on cut bait last year than live. they are like all other fish when it comes to being in a neutral mood most of the time.
     
  15. bammabuck

    bammabuck New Member

    Messages:
    12
    State:
    bama
    no doubt on the cutbait,i had cut the shad I was using in a long diagonal cut to leave alot of inards in both pieces,that big cat ate it right up...
     
  16. FlatGetter

    FlatGetter New Member

    Messages:
    196
    State:
    Illinois
    In-Fishermen Day on The River from Catfish Connection.
     
  17. Cherokee

    Cherokee New Member

    Messages:
    1,743
    State:
    Salyersville,Ke
    welcome to the BOC
     
  18. cathunter28

    cathunter28 New Member

    Messages:
    136
    State:
    Iowa
    welcome to the B.O.C and enjoy
     
  19. crazychuy

    crazychuy New Member

    Messages:
    92
    State:
    Southern California
    Thanks brothers for welcoming me aboard. It's the only place that I can ask alot of questions because I want to learn without annoying someone, "knock" on wood.

    CHUY
     
  20. mallard

    mallard New Member

    Messages:
    14
    State:
    ks
    The INfisherman has great dvds on all cypes of catfishing!