How do you catch your bullhead for bait?

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by smhmc6, May 12, 2008.

  1. smhmc6

    smhmc6 Member

    Messages:
    744
    State:
    Kansas
    I want to try out bullhead for flathead bait. I've caught plenty of bullhead before, but nothing I would consider bait size. I would generally be fishing for channels in a pond with nightcrawlers and I'd always catch a few bullhead but they are around 3/4-1 lb. How do you catch the smaller ones? Do you just go with way smaller hooks/worms or do you trap them? I'm working on a bait tank for my garage and I'd like to stock up on some quality bait. Thanks for the help.
     
  2. huskerkat

    huskerkat New Member

    Messages:
    47
    State:
    Nebraska
    I can usually catch small ones in my minnow trap using dog food or any other common trap bait. If you know you can find them in a small creek in your area, get a buddy and seine out a hole. I can almost guarantee you will catch some if they are there! I have also caught them on small hooks while trying to catch creek chubs. There is a great article in the members library on building a bream trap that I think would work great for bullheads in a pond. I haven't built one, but I will one of these days. Of course, I won't use it because it wouldn't be legal here:angry: But I do think it would work well all the same! Good luck and let us know how you do.
     

  3. smhmc6

    smhmc6 Member

    Messages:
    744
    State:
    Kansas
    Hey thanks Chad. I actually made that trap... works good for bluegill. They are legal here, but only 1/4" or less mesh. I made mine knowing they were legal here, but I failed notice the 1/4" part of the regs until I made it and then re-read them. Mine is 1/2" mesh. Next time I'll make sure to read a little closer. Anyway, I've used it for bluegill on a private pond but I feel like I need to make a new one with 1/4" mesh before I go and use it on public waters (where I know there are bullhead).
     
  4. massa_jorge

    massa_jorge New Member

    Messages:
    2,137
    State:
    TEXAS
    3/4 lb to a pound is perfect bait size. if you're in a boat you can just pierce the skin with the hook, but from the bank, you pretty much have to go through the meat with your hook, or it won't stay on the hook after the cast.

    i catch my bullheads at community fishing lakes. i catch them on an ultralight, with a size 2 circle hook to prevent them swallowing the bait, and either dying or being lethargic when i go to ue them for bait. i use chicken liver, grubs, and worms for bait. sometimes you can find them in big congregations in creeks too. hope this helps.
     
  5. River_monster91

    River_monster91 New Member

    Messages:
    2,233
    State:
    central kansas
    well if your not to far from quivera wildlife refuge you can go out there and hammer em with worms. they range for 4-6'' all the way up to a pound. i caught a half dozen in about 30 minutes. if ya aint to near i would say find a farm pond or another wildlife refuge or marsh area and theres bound to be bullheads in em.
     
  6. huskerkat

    huskerkat New Member

    Messages:
    47
    State:
    Nebraska
    I would have to think that 1/4" would be the smallest you could use, not the largest. I think your1/2" trap would be fine. Here we can use 1/4" mesh, but only have a 1" opening. That is why that trap wouldn't be legal here.:wink:
     
  7. smhmc6

    smhmc6 Member

    Messages:
    744
    State:
    Kansas
    Actually it does say it has to be smaller. Bait fish may be taken using a "fish trap with mesh not larger than one-fourth inch and throat no larger than one inch in diameter (must be tagged with fisherman's name and address)." That is in Kansas. I'm not sure why it couldn't be larger or how that would hurt the fish:confused2:. Oh well, I'll just have to make a new one that is legal... the bad thing is it took me a couple hours to make that one so I'll just have to wait until I get the time to make a new one.
     
  8. uttatoo

    uttatoo New Member

    Messages:
    1,797
    State:
    greatbend kansas
    just use rod and reel with a perch hook and a piece of worm
    i just hand my kids a pole and take them to the wet walnut creek and we catch 30-50 in about a hr. i also catch them in my throw net sometimes
     
  9. massa_jorge

    massa_jorge New Member

    Messages:
    2,137
    State:
    TEXAS
    hey gus you ever throw your net over a school of those little 1 1/2 inch bullheads? in a nylon net they are a pain to get out, and can fin ya with almost no resistance!
     
  10. uttatoo

    uttatoo New Member

    Messages:
    1,797
    State:
    greatbend kansas
    actually got some sunday about 1inch to 6inches long and it was a pain sorting them out for the bait bucket or back in and yes i got finned about 3 times and guess what dumb me did after i got done threw right back in the same spot and caught a bunch more
    each cast about 30 of them i wish it was carp i was catching i like them better for bait
     
  11. catfisherman_eky3

    catfisherman_eky3 New Member

    Messages:
    2,296
    State:
    Kentucky
    Hey I wish I could help you out but the only bullheads that I have ever caught has been in a minnow trap, ive never actually caught one on a hook or anything, if you figure it out keep us posted.
     
  12. smhmc6

    smhmc6 Member

    Messages:
    744
    State:
    Kansas
    I caught one on a worm under a bobber last night. Perfect bait size. Sure took a long time for just one. You can bet that in the future I'll put a trap out there. Thanks for all the advice.
     
  13. huskerkat

    huskerkat New Member

    Messages:
    47
    State:
    Nebraska
    Man, Steve, I thought I had better look up the regs here after you answered my post, and in Nebraska, it says ONLY 1/4" square mesh material! I don't understand why it couldn't be larger like 1/2" But I guess nobody asked us when they made the rules, or they would make perfect sense!:big_smile:
     
  14. smhmc6

    smhmc6 Member

    Messages:
    744
    State:
    Kansas
    Chad, the more I think about it the more I wonder why mesh size even matters. I don't get it... I'm sure there is a reason and its to protect some kind of wildlife I just can't figure it out. All I know is that its better to follow the rules than to look over your shoulder all the time knowing that you aren't.
     
  15. Pillpeddler

    Pillpeddler New Member

    Messages:
    79
    State:
    Kentucky
    Just a guess on the mesh size, the larger openings might act like a gill-net. Then you would only have channel cat bait. lol
     
  16. leadsinker

    leadsinker Member

    Messages:
    140
    State:
    Wichita, K
    Hey Steve, looks like we both have a bait trap that is built with the wrong mesh. I also made that trap, and have used it once and it worked great. I hadn't noticed that the regulations says '1/4" mesh' either. Oh well, guess I better put it away and make another one of the 'right size mesh'. You learn alot from other brothers on this site. I learned alittle more today.:big_smile:
     
  17. FATFLATTIE

    FATFLATTIE New Member

    Messages:
    2,170
    State:
    ILM, NC
    You can catch them on almost anything natural. Shrimp, worms, bread, liver, hotdogs, ham, small piece of fish. They'll eat it all if they're around. Just use a small hook and you'll be catching them in no time.