I went to the weigh in for the NCCATS tournament this AM and it verified a trend that I have been seeing all year. This year I have caught more than my share of flatheads and I do not target them as such. Karl Emerson, Vice President of the Carolina Catfish Club, was chatting with me while we were waiting for the tournament fishermen to come in and he was telling me about all the flatheads that he has been catching. Of the twelve teams fishing the NCCATS tournament, I only saw maybe two Ark. Blues weighed in and the rest were flatheads. Now this was a two fish tournament due to the new Ark. Blue reg's for LKN and maybe the flatheads were bigger than the blues they caught, but most said that it was a flathead night. The largest fish in the tournament was a 31.10 pound flathead. There was one larger, but it was disqualified because it's gills were no longer moving, it also was a flathead. Karl and myself slow troll for catfish using side planer boards with live or cut bait on them. He runs as many as six boards and I run two to four at a time, plus my rear lines. We both agreed that you can fish almost any place South of the Hwy 150 (River Bridge) and find flatheads during the summer months and in the winter you can go North of the bridge and be successful. I have always favored smaller baits for catfishing, but I have gone to 6 to 9" live baits on the side planer boards which has generated more strikes from flatheads. I am also hooking the perch thru the eyes with a no. 8/0 circle hook. The white perch (alive or the head and gut section) have produced more numbers for me, and Karl is using large bream and white perch with great success. For several years, my production on guide trips has consisted mostly of Ark. Blues and Channel cats, with an occassional flathead in the 15 to 49.8 pound range. Now, this year, when I do a trip, I'm disappointed if we don't tag a 15 to 25 pounded each time out. My fishing style is fishing open waters, running across dropoffs, deep and shallow points, flats, natural holes, junctions of creeks or coves with the main channel, plus working outside of shoals, docks and other man made structures. Also, it is becoming common place to catch a flathead in the 4 to 15 pound range or larger jigging for white perch. Garrett Goodson pulled up a 58 pounder several years ago jigging a spoon during a catfish tournament. If you'll have read my post this year, you would have noticed that I have been mentioning this all along. Capt. Gus, my friend Cliff and others have informed me all year of their flathead catches, which they don't target but catch on a regular basis fishing for perch or drifting in the vicinity of white perch. Thus, it appears that the white perch, which I and others have blamed for destroying the white bass and racoon perch population has contributed to the population growth of the flathead on LKN. So, on LKN, I guess we can thank the white perch for this situation. The neat thing about flatheads on LKN is that you can almost predict where you are going to catch a flathead at. I have done this on several occassions with mifit98 (Mac Mc) last year and with him again this week with one of his bassin buddies, plus others like turfman and other clients. Now I'm not talking about night time fishing for flatheads, but morning fishing. Full sun or cloud cover, it does not appear to have an affect on the flathead bite. If you have a white perch or bream/gill out there on a planer board, soon or later it will cross the kill zone of a flathead. I would suggest that you release it right where you caught it and you can return over and over again within a 500 to 1000' radius and catch it again. You don't have to use planer boards, you can use slip floats or just plain floats and get a flathead bite as long as you are moving your baits over areas that they patrol. If you have never experience the fight of a flathead at the boat, there is a treat in store for you when it happens. If any one needs any information on planer boards or bait prepartation and presentation, you can go to the top of the forum 'Catfish Publication' and scroll down to 'Mac Byrum's Catfish University' and find what you need to know to get started with this technique.