I use about eight. All they are is 12 inch sections of those swiming pool noodles. I used 50# mono throught the center and around the outside like a nascar track with a tunnel. Put a swivel on befor you tie it. My main lines are all different lenghts of 80# powerbraid. when you get a fish on the swivel will slide down the mono towards one end or the other on the noodle and make it stand up letting you know theres something on. I wrap my mail line around the noodle and stick the hook in the foam. Like I said I keep eight behind my seat and if you have a round storage opening a styrofoam bait bucket will fit right in. As I move though the lake I pull one out from behind the seat take the hook out of the foam put a minnow on and with the main line still wrapped around the noodle I throw it up in the air. the minnow will out run the noodle and unwind. This was you don't have line all in the yak getting tangled up. When I collect them I just grab the noodle and start twisting the line in like a cuban reel. Once again you avoid all that line in the yak. If theres a fish on wind it slowly. Most of the time they'll let you pullum right in.
I can visualize it getting 'very interesting' when you're trying to land the catfish. I'd use a net for the smaller and medium sized fish, and make me some kind of 'flying gaff' for the big ones. (A flying gaff is designed so that once you stick the hook into the fish, the handle will come away from the hook; a heavy line is attached to the hook.) Using a flying gaff would let you pull the fish in to shore, get out of the kayak, and do what you want with the fish. If you plan to release the fish, be sure to gaff it in the lower lip, where you won't injure it.
Yes, Jerry got some rep from me for the flying gaff idea; quite frankly, I have never seen such a device, not even in web searches.
Jerry, can you point us in the direction of where you would find such a thing?
This sounds like a great idea for kayakers that would like to land larger fish like blue cats. A flying gaff would be safer than a lip gripper for the angler; my only concern would be for the fish if you are planning CPR.
If you'll look carefully at the picture I posted of the tarpon being lip gaffed, you can see how to gaff a fish without harming it. Since tarpon are always released, this method is used when gaffing them.
Here's a picture of a flying gaff. The handle is a lot longer than you would want, because they are usually used from a large boat. Notice that the hook is designed to fit into the end of the handle. It is held in place by pulling the rope tight, then holding the rope and gaff handle together. When you have the fish gaffed, you can let go the handle, and simply have the fish on the rope. For your purpose, I would use a big shark hook that has a barb on it. Be sure to use something for the handle that floats!
Just saw this gaff on a tarpon fishing program on TV, and found it on the internet. Looks like just the ticket for those big cats too big to get into the boat, either because of a physical disability, or because it's a real small boat.