River Flatheads Compared To Lake Flathead Catfish

Discussion in 'LOCAL OHIO TALK' started by catfishrollo, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    Well, I have to say a river flathead fights much harder than lake flatheads from what I have learned. Lake flatheads around here seem to carry much more body weight and mass for their lengths, but lack the muscle tone that river flatheads develop from fighting heavy currents I supose. Thats why I believe the next state record will probably come from a lake again. Maybe not, but fish for fish, I would much rather battle one in a river system than on a lake any day! So you guys that fish lakes and rivers for flatheads also, do you see this same scenario where you live? Is there a difference in the fish you see also between the two? Maybe its just luck by chance, but so far we have have been diasapointed in the fights we have had when catching them from the lakes! I would like to know from some of you that have been chasing them on the lakes longer than myself what you think.. Shoot what you know!!!!:wink: rollo
     
  2. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    I agree 100%, it seems like any fish you catch from a river is alot stronger than fish from a lake. Dont get me wrong, the flatheads at a lake are stout fish, but hookin into a 30+ lber on the river trying to get him off the bottom is no comparison to a lake fish..:roll_eyes:
     

  3. smoothkip25

    smoothkip25 New Member

    Messages:
    1,320
    State:
    ohio
    I myself have only caught a few smaller flats from a river but is true in channels also! A 5 to 10 pound channel from a river fights like a 15 to 20 pounder in a lake! But a 40 pound fish has to fight hard regardless! LOL! Im yet to catch one though!
     
  4. jason berry

    jason berry New Member

    Messages:
    819
    State:
    Evansville
    Im not sure about the size difference because I changed fishing spots pretty drastically. I use to fish lakes in Arizona for Flats and now that Im back in Indiana I fish the Ohio River. I have kept very accurate measurement on flats girth, length, and weight since Ive been back but just weight back in Arizona. I do agree that a river flathead will put up a better fight than a lake flathead. Id almost say that any fish in the river would becasue of the current. Ive caught nice flatheads in lakes that were big and put up good fights but since fishing the Ohio River Ive caught flats that were the same size of other flats but fought alot harder than other cats the same size. I have caught many flats in the 40# range but I hooked in to to one this year that was around the same size as many other flats I have caught but instead of the usual 15 minute fight it took me a half hour to get him in. I will let a flat take line but I will try not to let him go anywhere he wants but this one with 65# power pro line and a good rod I couldnt budge it was like he just kept digging in.
     
  5. catfish kenny

    catfish kenny New Member

    Messages:
    6,064
    State:
    Iowa
    I cant call flatts cause I only fish the rivers for them round here but I have caught several other spiecies in ponds/lakes though and I think yer right..even with other fish..Its that current fer sure
     
  6. john catfish young

    john catfish young New Member

    Messages:
    3,070
    State:
    Kentucky
    I'm not convinced of this myself. I think "maybe" that it is the swifter water that makes it seem as though they are fighting harder. This year as I caught a 67.2 lb Flathead from a lake...She whipped my A$$. I was using 20# mono and this added to the suspense of the fight. The battle was so intense, that I was sick for over an hour, from the adrenaline rush. I have caught many big fish from swift waters and rivers, they do fight hard...but I think it is the current more than the fish. Last Nov. I caught a 47.9 lb Bluecat in some swifter water of the river channel and it about whooped my A$$ again on 20# mono. I guess I could go with heavier line, but wheres the challenge (FUN) in that? I am set in my ways and until a fish gets the best of me and wins the battle....I'm sticking with my 20# Mono. Then maybe I'll go to 25# Mono....lol:smile2:
     
  7. RetiredToFish

    RetiredToFish New Member

    Messages:
    1,186
    State:
    Newark, Ohio
    I am going to throw my 2 cents worth in here .... and I have to agree with john catfish young .... I think the weight of the current is what makes the major difference. To test this .... take your landing net .... sitting still in your boat in the river, pull the net (mostly holes) against the current, now do the same thing in a lake while sitting still .... I could be wrong (I was once, but then I got a divorce) ...... Garry-
     
  8. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    Another reason I ask this, we have caught some lake flatheads that quickly came to the surface often acting in a way that channel cats will, almost wanting to roll and twist. I have never caught one on the river that I can remember that acted this way. Most of the time they want to root, and keep their heads down. It amazed me when I saw this.. rollo
     
  9. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    River fish caught in little to no current will still fight harder than a lake caught fish. They spend their entire lives swimming aginst the current which just makes them stronger than their lake cousins that have never experienced current.
     
  10. neocats

    neocats New Member

    Messages:
    2,130
    State:
    Steubenvil
    I still haven't caught a lake Flathead, but what you are saying seemd to apply for channels also.
     
  11. john catfish young

    john catfish young New Member

    Messages:
    3,070
    State:
    Kentucky
    Are we talking about Paylakes or small ponds here? I often fish Lake Barkley and although it is a lake....it has some current. It is a huge Lake. None of the big ones I have caught came to the top quickly.:crazy:
     
  12. hunted

    hunted New Member

    Messages:
    1,943
    State:
    washington court house,oh
    i don't know much,if anything about river fish,but i could sure imagine they fight a lot harder seeing how they always have to battle the current
     
  13. SubnetZero

    SubnetZero New Member

    Messages:
    1,619
    State:
    Sherman IL
    Its certainly probable that River flats may have more power, but fighting the current as your fighting the fish will make a tougher fight..
    I've also found river flats easier to catch than lake flats. River flats (and most all river fish) are generally MUCH more aggressive as well.. Seems there are much different tactics to catching them.. For example, River Flats you can really key in on current breaks/patterns for choice locations (read any of CatMatt's outstanding posts on the subject). While river locations have structure/depth/contour/etc as factors, Lake Flats seems to have more infisis on them because of the no current.
     
  14. Ahquabi_Master

    Ahquabi_Master New Member

    Messages:
    999
    State:
    WDM Iowa
    john catfish young says it all. that current is the main factor. though there is the argument of muscle toning from constant current fighting, I believe that the difference would not be so drastic as to make the lake fish look like a weakling compared to the river fish.
     
  15. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    You two are on top of the whole question. Catch a river flat in current and he will use it to his advantage. He'll turn his head down straight into the current and fight you for every foot of line. He will sit on bottom and dare you to pull him up.

    Lake flats are harder to come by, you can fish every day for a month in a well represented lake and still not hook one. Ask Jim White, or Robby Robinson.
    But you hook one in 3 to 10 feet of slack water and he has no chance aginst 40lb mono and a tiger stik. You'll just pull him up on top till he's Surfing.
     
  16. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    I am talking about state park lakes, I dunno about them paylakes and ponds I don't go fish them John, I am talking about large impoundments here in Ohio....rollo
     
  17. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    They do act different from river fish, I do know current has to be considered alot, but I still think that they lack the fight because they aren't conditioned like river fish are from living in a more rugged enviroment. Just my opinion, but I agree with ya skip... The ones we hook in 3-10 foot of water, just seem to give up at times.... rollo
     
  18. smokey869

    smokey869 New Member

    Messages:
    966
    State:
    frederickt
    ones i have caught in the rivers in shallow water didnt seem to put up the fight that others in deeper water did, the 47 lb i caught at tappan was in close to 30 feet of water, and he did not want to come up at all, took 4 or 5 trips back to the bottom after i got him up, but i caught a 29 lb in a lake in shallow water (4-8 FT)and it did not seem to fight much, came right up to the top? i think that the current does have an effect on the fish but i also think water depth does also, if they have room to go down they will
     
  19. misterwhisker

    misterwhisker New Member

    Messages:
    1,056
    State:
    T. Bowl
    i agree with that rollo.. the current makes for a better fight no matter what specie..most of my big flats have came from the river, how ever i have caught alot from lakes also...but fighting a big flat in a lake that comes in easy per say is still a good catch especialy when your wining money doing it :wink:
     
  20. Still_Waters...

    Still_Waters... New Member

    Messages:
    171
    State:
    Ohio
    I gotta agree with this, (a few people have said things like it, but I'm quoting this one cause I'm feeling lazy and don't want to look for another :roll_eyes:) not sure about flats in particular, I'm still new to the game, but most of the fish I catch out of the river just seem to boss those that come out of a lake or pond, but there's the current or lack of current to look at, and I do believe that's a bit of a factor, and also just the amount of fight in that particular fish itself, I know when I fish carp in a lake sometimes you get a big one that's a wimp and easy to reel in and sometimes you get one half the size that hits like a ton of bricks and keeps on going. The way I look at it is like this though, you take a guy that trains every day of his life, works out, everything, and pit him against a guy that spends all his time taking it easy on a nice comfy sofa, who's going to win out... the tough guy, but like everything else in life, there's always exceptions to the rule.