frustating flatheads!

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by bigpapa15206, Sep 15, 2005.

  1. bigpapa15206

    bigpapa15206 New Member

    Messages:
    220
    State:
    Pittsburgh
    for a couple of weeks now i cant seem to get any decent sized flatheads. I am using 5-7" white bass(lively as ever) hooks slighty below the dorsil fin with a 5/0 baithook. I never feel the the fish pick up the bait but trust me the doeverytime. I go to reel in to rebate after what seems like no action and bam snag almost everytime. And when i dont get a snag i look at the bass and i can tell that he has been in a flatheads mouth! What the heck am i doin wrong? I guess im gonna have to hold the rod in my hand the whole time so i can detect exactly when he picks it up.
     
  2. JAYNC

    JAYNC New Member

    Messages:
    1,312
    State:
    Newport N.C.
    I would put some kind of a rattle or bell or a light stick on the end of your rod, otherwise get a reel with a clicker. It might be gar also. If you are using bait that big I would move up to a 6/0 or 7/0 hook and leave a lot of the hook exposed. Good luck
     

  3. Pennsylvaniacatchaser

    Pennsylvaniacatchaser Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,341
    State:
    Sarver, Pa
    I agree with with JAYNC about using a larger hook. If I'm using 5" - 7" White Bass or Bluegill, I prefer a 7/0 or 8/0 Kahle Hook. I also agree about the fact that perhaps something besides a Flathead is hitting your bait because all the Flatheads I have caught this year did not play around with bait of that size, they took it and there was no messin' around!
     
  4. nuthinlikeacat

    nuthinlikeacat New Member

    Messages:
    517
    State:
    Eden Prairie, Minnesota
    I agree with the other posts in that you probably should get a bigger hook. Like Penn, all my cats this year have just smoked my bait, no messing around. Either something else may be hitting your bait, or the cats hitting your bait arent big enough to eat them.
     
  5. BassMassey

    BassMassey Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,883
    State:
    Oconee
    sounds like garr...........lol, just let it sit out there till u know u got sometin..........if somethin is playing with it u might wanna check it every now and again.........and if it is gar let em play with it for a while and they will get the line tangled in their snout and u can reel him in.......damn gar, lol
     
  6. MUDHOLE KID

    MUDHOLE KID New Member

    Messages:
    1,178
    State:
    Anderson,S.C.
    Never heard of a hungry flathead spitting out a good tasty meal.Usally if he put's it in his mouth it's gone.I believe in large hooks,baits like that usally have a 9/0-10/0 bait hook in it's back.Could be gar ,I just don't see a flathead licking it to death. :D
     
  7. bigpapa15206

    bigpapa15206 New Member

    Messages:
    220
    State:
    Pittsburgh
    I am positive it is not a gar, i can tell by the bow shaped indentions on each side of the bait and once it had to be in the flats mouth because it was crushed and coverd in that slime all the way past the hook. 5\0 doesnt seem big but these one are huge and i am barely hooking them under the dorsil. And i do use baitcasters with clickers.
     
  8. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,081
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    Something that has worked for me in the past is snipping off the dorsal fin of the bluegill. Scrape or scale one side of the bluegill, this would offer a little different presentation and might make the flathead strike more aggressively. Ive had flatheads pickup and drop my bait several times and I would reel in and do this, cast back out in the same spot, and would get a more aggressive strike and run with the bait. Another suggestion would be to cut the gill in half and use the half with the head. Good luck
     
  9. BassMassey

    BassMassey Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,883
    State:
    Oconee
    what exactly do u mean by scale one side?? do u mean just kinda scrape off the scales with a knife?? will they still be lively after this??
     
  10. M.Magis

    M.Magis Member

    Messages:
    45
    State:
    SE Ohio
    What you have are smaller channel cats killing your baits. Big flatheads don't crush the bait, they engulf it. Often they have it swallowed before you can even set the hook. Occasionally when I catch a big flathead the bait will still be on the hook, and it's usually still very lively. Whenever I get a bait back that's been scaled with a semi circle crush mark, it's a tell tale sign of channel cats. When flathead takes the bait, you'll know it, and unless it's a small fish, they don't play with their food. :) A 5/0 hook is plenty big enough to catch most flatheads.
     
  11. JAYNC

    JAYNC New Member

    Messages:
    1,312
    State:
    Newport N.C.
    Dont forget about turtles also, one night I caught 3 snapper turtles in one spot.
     
  12. loop

    loop New Member

    Messages:
    422
    State:
    Newkirk,Oklahom
    Not to pick a fight but offer information.I'll agree what he is dealing with are more than likely Channels.But I have to disagee with the flathead not crushing his food.Well how would I know this to be true?When I lived in Tx's I went to one of the big sporting good places where they had a BIG flathead.While I was there I watched him crush a fish drop it then back away an watch the injured fish.After a few minutes then went over picked up the bait swam to some cover an then swallowed it.I'm not saying they act this way all the time,but they will do it.Also I've had them peck around on my bait for sometime just barely move the line then make a few small runs then go for the gusto.My largest on a rod an reel(44lbs) bit like that.And yes I've had them hit it like a freight trian get them in an the bait still be alive.Me personaly i like the freight train to show up for dinner.
    Loop
     
  13. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,081
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    Thats right scrape the side of the gill, it will leave a film that acts as a chum in the water. Yes they will stay alive just as long.
     
  14. bigpapa15206

    bigpapa15206 New Member

    Messages:
    220
    State:
    Pittsburgh
    I have had flats do that all the time. Pick it up and move it a few feet, then do it again and again and then just swallow it. My biggest 24# was only 3 clicks and didnt move anymore.
     
  15. Midwest Drifter

    Midwest Drifter New Member

    Messages:
    150
    State:
    Kansas
    Went out last night during the magic hours from 10 to 4 and all I got was about 3 to 4 pound ding dang wiper. Took a 5 to 6 inch bluegill. I bout pulled my hair out. :cursing: Only thing I caught all night.
     
  16. LilRyjoe04

    LilRyjoe04 New Member

    Messages:
    2,432
    State:
    Indianapolis,Indiana
    We are finally getting some rain in Indy. Over the weekend I caught a twelve and nine pound blue. :) This weekend is looking pretty promising for the Indiana get together in Martinsville. ;) Good Luck Fishing Brothers!! :D
     
  17. M.Magis

    M.Magis Member

    Messages:
    45
    State:
    SE Ohio
    Loop, your right. I shouldn't have said they never do it, and I should have specified that by "smaller fish", I meant 30 lbs and under as a general rule from the fish I catch. I suppose it's relative to the fish's size vs. the bait size. Still, if it was a flathead, I doubt one would just crush it and leave it. They usually finish their meals. ;) Smaller channel cats however, will drive you nuts trying to kill a bait too big for their mouths.