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Favorite Bait For Catfish

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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Been tearing into some decent Chesapeake Bay blue cats on the little gills. Cut the dorsal and throw them live. Spring water temps are getting the fish all the more agitated, been pulling drag and busting the surface just after hookset. A lot of fun to be had out there.

EDIT: Just the other day after a cold front. Dropped some baits and hooked up with a fatty blue.

Live Bluegills For Big Chesapeake Catfish
 
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Stacee from Indiana
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Chubs and shiners would be my favorite since there easy to get for me.
Shad would be right up there too.
If I had skipjack around I'd be using them for sure.
I do like to use live and cut bluegills because you can catch them any time you run out of bait.
Mooneye, suckers, crappie also has worked good for me as cut bait.
 

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We’re you at in illinois? It is legal to use them as bait as long as they come from the same body of water. So you can’t catch a bass or bluegill from one body of water an use it as bait in anothe body of water.
 

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I'm in Illinois and we can use bluegills in same body of water to catfish, but not bass, whitebass, crappie, etc.. We can use Carp, Asian carp, Buffalo, Drum, rough fish though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I came from an area near the Quad Cities. Couldn't be happier with the quality fishing out here in the Chesapeake.

Tidal Catfish
 
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I would ask a game warden on that rule.
I just looked and yes those fish may be used as bait but may not be cut up. They may be used only in accordance to the size and creel and length imposed upon that particular body of water.
I was always under the impression either from earlier laws governing this discussion and just always stuck to bluegill only and never really looked any further or again for l was content with just 'gills.
So l guess l was wrong and apologize for bad information.
 

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Those upper Bay blues do like bluegill for bait. I've been thinking about trying the razor clams like they sell to the crabbers but haven't bought any yet to give it a shot. Have you tried bullheads yet for those Chesapeake cats? There's a pond near my house loaded with bullheads and my son keeps suggesting that we go catch some and use them.
 

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I won't lie...the reason I like bluegill/sunfish the best is mainly cause they're easy to get and they'll catch some fish. If fresh skips were readily available around me, they'd be my vote.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Those upper Bay blues do like bluegill for bait. I've been thinking about trying the razor clams like they sell to the crabbers but haven't bought any yet to give it a shot. Have you tried bullheads yet for those Chesapeake cats? There's a pond near my house loaded with bullheads and my son keeps suggesting that we go catch some and use them.
No sir, I've used channels as cut bait a few times before with no luck, but bullheads might be a "sweeter" meat. My father likes to eat them himself. Went out yesterday, same spot, similar conditions and used bluegill and crappie. My girlfriend caught 3 blues on live bluegills, and I didn't get touched on the live crappie.

Odd thing is, last year, cut crappie was my go-to. Seemed like the bigger blues loved to lunch a piece of it.
 
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