Monster Catfish...what do you do with them?

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by Ol Man, Apr 19, 2006.

  1. Ol Man

    Ol Man New Member

    Messages:
    3,170
    State:
    Illinois
    I guess all my fishing life I have been a "panfish" fisherman. I have run trot lines, bank poles, etc, and end up with nothing bigger than 4-5 lb channels. Had an uncle that was into hand fishing, or noodling, as its called here. I had the occasion to help eat a 30# he plucked, and it was nasty. Fat greasy ol thing. That said, what does one do with those monsters I see here. BTW, I've never even seen one bigger than that 30#'er in real life... Don't get mad at me...



    Misfortune comes to all men and most women. --Chinese Proverb.
     
  2. jim

    jim New Member

    Messages:
    2,579
    State:
    Jacksonville NC
    Unfortunately for most men the misfortune comes in the form of a woman.!;)
    Jims Proverb.
     

  3. NCCatter

    NCCatter Member

    Messages:
    462
    State:
    North Carolina
    Jeb,
    I caught a 40 lb. blue one time at Santee, and you could tell the difference between it and the 5 pounders taste-wise. To me they are not good eating, but some say that it depends on the way you cook it. Smaller pieces should cook better. However, most "real" sportsmen usually catch them and take a few photos then release them back into the water so they can reproduce for our future sportsmen/women.
     
  4. mcwrestler

    mcwrestler New Member

    Messages:
    444
    State:
    Tennessee
    I release all flats and blues, and all channels over 4-5lbs. I seldom take any. I only photograph flats over 20lbs, usually only 30 and up, and blues the same. I only photograph channels over 10lbs. I wasted too many pictures last time, if I get a digital that will all change. Let the big ones go, they will spawn and pass on the genes. Also, noodling takes a big fish off a bed of eggs and hinders the offspring. As long as you eat what you catch I will not criticize if you keep it. Noodling is fine if you eat them or let them go. I just don't believe I would go noodling, but I would consider. I prefer rod and reel.
     
  5. Ol Man

    Ol Man New Member

    Messages:
    3,170
    State:
    Illinois
    Reckon I never delved that deep, Jim. Plenty of food for thought there though...
     
  6. jim

    jim New Member

    Messages:
    2,579
    State:
    Jacksonville NC
    YUP just ask Adam.;)
     
  7. dinkbuster1

    dinkbuster1 New Member

    Messages:
    2,272
    State:
    Ohio
    if its over 20, i'll weigh and take a pic before i release. i kept some 10+lb channels last year to eat, no more! too tough and too much red meat. only 5lb and less get cleaned from here on out.
     
  8. OpsMan

    OpsMan New Member

    Messages:
    15
    State:
    Texas
    I cant say that
     
  9. OpsMan

    OpsMan New Member

    Messages:
    15
    State:
    Texas
    I cant say that I have ever caught any monster cats, but I would find it a shame to take one from mother nature. I have found that the two pound channels are the best eaten ones.
     
  10. catseeman

    catseeman New Member

    Messages:
    1,189
    State:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    I haven't caught any really big ones. When I do Iwill release them so long as they are in good condition. but if not . to eat clean , steak cut 1" thick soak steaks in 1/2 butter milk and water mix. takes the strong taste away.
     
  11. Ol Man

    Ol Man New Member

    Messages:
    3,170
    State:
    Illinois
    Thanks guys, for all your feedback. From what I can gather, one almost has to fish for those biggies on purpose. Big hooks, big bait=big fish. I just was curious I may be missing something. I'd be leery something that big would drag my fat behind into the water.


    It's not how big your pencil is, but how you write your name.
     
  12. Drum Andersen

    Drum Andersen New Member

    Messages:
    221
    State:
    Nebraska
    I let all my fish over 5 pounds go and eat the smaller ones.
     
  13. vacatfish

    vacatfish New Member

    Messages:
    447
    State:
    bedford virginia
    I don't keep any over 10lbs and i never keep any under 10lbs unles i know someone who cant fish that needs foos then i may give 1 or 2 but like i said none over 10lb do i keep. other then that i am a catch and release catfishermen.
     
  14. The J-Man!

    The J-Man! New Member

    Messages:
    321
    State:
    St.Paul, MN
    Even though I do fish quite often, I release nearly everything I catch regardless of size. Once a year or so I'll keep a stringer's worth (nothing over 2 lbs) and fillet them up and enjoy them. I just don't eat that much fish.

    The feeling of releasing big cats back into the river is a great one I must say. Having out battled the beast into shore (or boat), held him up to admire, then watch them swim back into the depths gives me a great sense of satisfaction.
     
  15. TDawgNOk

    TDawgNOk Gathering Monitor (Instigator)

    Messages:
    3,365
    State:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    First of all, I'm all for catch and release. I understand the reasoning behind it, and plan to do it if I catch a big one. As to the MYTH that a big one tastes different, is tougher, or you can tell the differance between a 5 lb cat and a 50 cat when eating. You can't!!! If the fish are properly cleaned, and properly prepared, there is NO WAY you can tell a differance.

    Don't believe me? Bring me a live 50 lber and a live 5 lber, I'll clean them, cook them, and then ask you which is which.
     
  16. treddinwater

    treddinwater Active Member

    Messages:
    1,123
    State:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    I've been taught my whole life to let the big fish go, they are good spawners, great fighters, and anything that grows to be big is gererally one of the smarter fish in the water cause you don't get big being dumb, so you have to respect what knowledge the fish may have when it comes to surviving. Also, I've noticed any cats over about 6lbs, even when fried, taste just like the water they came from, very muddy flavored. If you ask me, prime eating size is in the 1-2lb range.
     
  17. tkishkape

    tkishkape New Member

    Messages:
    782
    State:
    Gore, Okla
    As a rule, I will clean a mess of catfish once or twice a month, and only the ones between 2 to 8 pounds. They're easier to filet, easier to handle, and the filets fit the frying pan.

    All catfish over 10 pounds are weighed (those over 20 are photographed) and released as quickly and humanely as possible.

    The catfish that have survived long enough to become a 10 pounder have outlived over 90% of it's nest-mates. They have become trophies. The very low percentage that survive long enough to weigh 30+ pounds are true trophies that should be respected and conserved.
     
  18. David Knotts

    David Knotts New Member

    Messages:
    2,569
    State:
    Bossier City, La
    Well I've ate em in all sizes, and never found a bad one. I will keep a big one from time to time, just cut em thin, deep fry em and eat. But to each his own.
     
  19. TeamCatHazzard

    TeamCatHazzard New Member

    Messages:
    517
    State:
    Illinois
    I have ate both actually, big and small, I wont keep anything over 10lbs however and very rarely keep fish anyways. I almost always CPR which I think should be done with these bigger fish you are talking about.
     
  20. catfishjohn

    catfishjohn New Member

    Messages:
    10,217
    State:
    Greenup Co. KY
    If I ever get the privilege to catch them i'll CPR them.I've only caught 1 in the 30#'s and a few in the 20#'s and they all went back in safe,tired and with a sore mouth but alive to reproduce more big ones.