How much different do flats hit than large channels?

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by readingcatfisher, Feb 22, 2009.

  1. readingcatfisher

    readingcatfisher New Member

    Messages:
    3,748
    State:
    Berks coun
    Besides the obvious size and weight differences ,how much different do flat hit bait and fight once they are hooked?
     
  2. psychomekanik

    psychomekanik New Member

    Messages:
    2,534
    State:
    Illinois
    It depends on how they are biting. A chanell will, tat, tap, tap, the bait. a flathead will usually slam it and run. But, if they're being picky, they'll pick it up, crush it and spit it out, come back and do the same thing a few times before sucking it in and swimming off. It's usually clear what kind of fish it is between a chanell and a flathead though when it hits. One piece of advise if your a beginning flathead fisherman. Either use a bait click or anchor the pole down somehow. When a flathead hits and your not holding the pole, You might lose it ! when your fighting them a chanell will be wore out before you get him to the boat. he might roll a few times and flip and splash. but a flathead will come to the boat and you think "well that was easy" then his head breaks water and he'll turn down and swim down stripping off line. You'll get him back to the boat and he'll do it again. sometimes several times.
     

  3. unclebuncle

    unclebuncle New Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    State:
    Humboldt,K
    Its been my experience that a flat head normally smashes the bait hard hesitates then picks it up and slowly swims off.Once hooked its a head down powerful fight with maybe one good run.Channel seem to hit the bait on the run and keep going.Also channel will come to the top a lot and thrash back and forth on their head.IMO.:smile2:
     
  4. readingcatfisher

    readingcatfisher New Member

    Messages:
    3,748
    State:
    Berks coun
    I have some baitfeeder type spinning reels they won't get yanked in:wink:
     
  5. catfish kenny

    catfish kenny New Member

    Messages:
    6,064
    State:
    Iowa
    If them Flatteys hit you and there is any size yer gonn know it:wink:Specialey if there river flatts been fighting current and such....I know theres one hell of a difference in the fights and hits from all species of cats....I think the flatts the king of kings fer as fish go....there brutes and hell on gear but man they are my faverote to catch....I have hit some fidds ya'd thought was substantial in size till ya get that lill thing in the boat then yer like aww SHi$$ man thast thing was a fighter (LOL):cool2:Oh yes theres a difference......there all fun though:wink:
     
  6. kyredneck

    kyredneck New Member

    Messages:
    1,021
    State:
    Kentucky
    IMO, it does make a difference in how they strike if you're using live bait, which you'll most likely use for flatheads. If you're comparing a channel cat hitting on chicken liver to a flathead taking a live bluegill, it's not the same. Channels will also 'slam' live bait.
     
  7. JAinSC

    JAinSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,514
    State:
    South Carolina
    In my experience, large channels and small blues actually hit harder than a good flathead. Blues tend to slam baits like they are on the run. With many of my good flatheads the typical bite is a little pop (I believe this is when they suck the bait into their mouth) followed by a short pause and then the rod slowly bends over as they swim off - slow and easy - they don't have to run off with it. They are in no hurry; nobody is going to take it away from them!
     
  8. katfish ken

    katfish ken New Member

    Messages:
    4,092
    State:
    Paintsvill
    I've heard flatheads bite described to be like a Mack truck (slow and steady) Channels are more of a tap tap tap hit. In My experience that would be a good description.
     
  9. andrew76

    andrew76 New Member

    Messages:
    457
    State:
    southwest ohio
    I read that when a flatty hits he swims bye the bait once or twice and then he just opens up and grabs the bait and swims off all in one motion. But thats just what I read so dont hold it aginst me if im wrong.:tounge_out:
     
  10. unclebuncle

    unclebuncle New Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    State:
    Humboldt,K
    I normally fish in rough water below low water dams.I fish staight down on a short line next to jumble of rocks.When A flathead hits there wil be two sharp whacks then the line will slowly move off against the clicker.After 8 or 10 feet they stop and I think thats when they turn the bait to swallow it head first.When it starts to move again I set the hook.I have a long heavy rod so sometimes I jerk 8 or 10 lb fish right out of the water.If a channel hit the same bait there would be no warning he would be on.
     
  11. Snagged2

    Snagged2 New Member

    Messages:
    6,252
    State:
    Verde Valley AZ
    On The Flatcats I have caught, in general, they seem to take or pick up the bait and move off with it, like they just sneaked it, and usually head downstream with it, once I know they are hooked, the fight is on, and they vary a bit in the fight, depending on the fish. :wink:
    Channels, hit like they're tryin to knock the bait out, and the reel clicker just RIPS, a lot of the time.. especially if they have any size,,,:smile2:
    I can tell it's a Flat by the sound of the clicker most of the time, like others have said, they grab it and just leave,, slow, steady, and powerful..
    No Blues around where I fish,,,:sad2:
     
  12. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    I agree 100 percent. There is usually a big enough difference between the two, that you can predict what what is on the other end before even pulling the rod out of a rod holder. Most big flatheads I have caught have either simply slowly loaded the rod up, or a sudden pop to the rod you often hear and see, then the slow loading of the rod and the steady run. A channel cat will often slam it, and scream the clicker, often stopping after a short burst, mouthing it a few times, and another fast and furious burst.. Smaller flatheads will often hit like channels in my opinion. But, to me there is usually a noticeable difference when fishing livebaits and clickers between a flathead run and a channel cat run...rollo
     
  13. stumpjumper

    stumpjumper New Member

    Messages:
    1,492
    State:
    Dallas, GA
    I think rollo and JA described it exactly! I couldn't agree more!
     
  14. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Blues and channels will "SLAM" the baits and take off quickly. They get outta there because other catfish are competing for the morsel. That's why your clicker screams when it gets hit by a channel or blue.

    Flatheads will give thier bait a Mike Tyson Punch Out and run slowly away. They have no competition and just take thier time. My biggest flats last year all came on slow steady runs of the clicker.
     
  15. moose22dog

    moose22dog New Member

    Messages:
    718
    State:
    YINZERBURGH,PA
    I ALSO AGREE 100% WITH ROLLO,I FISH JUST FOR FLATS BUT HAVE CAUGHT CHANNELS , AND THE CHANNELS I DO CATCH SEEM TO BE BIG SINCE I'M USING THE NORM FLATTY BAIT. SO THEY FIGHT AND HIT HARDER THAN MOST. BUT IF U GET A FLAT SAY ABOVE 15# YOU ARE GOING TO KNOW IT THEY WILL BULLDOG U ALL THE WAY IN. JUST MY 2 CENTS. .. THANKS JUSTIN
     
  16. SubnetZero

    SubnetZero New Member

    Messages:
    1,619
    State:
    Sherman IL

    Thats pretty much it...
    Channel cat will generally riiiiiiiiiiiiip riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiip riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiip the clicker,
    Flathead will be more like riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiip Slowly.
     
  17. jason berry

    jason berry New Member

    Messages:
    819
    State:
    Evansville
    Also blues and channels will roll when your trying to pull them in and a flathead will try to stay close to the bottom, its very hard to keep them off the bottom the bigger they get.
     
  18. unclebuncle

    unclebuncle New Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    State:
    Humboldt,K
    I've had big flatheads just lay down in heavy current and couldnt move them.Almost like being snagged just lay there til they get ready.
     
  19. JAinSC

    JAinSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,514
    State:
    South Carolina
    On the fight-

    I generally know when I have a blue or a channel (when I'm flathead fishing) because they are so wild. They thrash and roll and shake and just generally carry on. The flatheads put their head down and pull - much more steady or stable. The exception is that sometimes a smaller flathead, like around 10 pounds or less, will be real wild, too.
     
  20. patrickgd

    patrickgd New Member

    Messages:
    809
    State:
    Memphis TN
    To me all Catfish bite different at different times. sometimes they slam it, sometimes they mouth it. sometimes they eat it and just sit on it. Most of the time with channels the hits will be more on the aggressive side. flatheads will hit agressively at times but sometimes you might just get a few soft tugs or your line will go limp. I think it all just depends on the feeding mood.