Santee Cooper Lake channel catfish

Discussion in 'SOUTH CAROLINA LAKES / RESERVOIRS' started by chrisblue, Jul 16, 2007.

  1. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    I know most people dont pay much attention to the poor channel cat because they dont get to big although the channel cat is what probably planted the addicting seed of catfishin in most of us.My question is though has anybody ever noticed the difference in the channel cats at Santee compared to the channel cats in the other parts of the state? 9 out of 10 channels I catch out of Santee or should I say Moultrie have a humped looking head, more humped than any other channel I've ever seen on any body of water (pond or Lake).I'm talkin about both male and female channels.They just look completely different to me.Maybe I'm the only one who has noticed this but I for one treasure the channel cat and I think they are way to often overlooked and over shadowed by the blues and flatheads even though pound for pound they could drag a blue and a flathead all over the place.It seems like I read somewhere maybe In-Fisherman that the channels in Santee where a slightly different breed or family than your ordinary channel.Tommy maybe you could ask around at work about that.
     
  2. Beaufort

    Beaufort New Member

    Messages:
    343
    State:
    Rock Hill, SC
    Yeah now that u mention it some of them do look different especially on moultrie. Some of them have them big humps and there lips seem bigger to we always called them old blue gumed channels.
     

  3. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

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    1,345
    State:
    SC
    Yep I forgot to mention the lip part.
     
  4. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Chris, I spoke with Jim Glenn at length today about the channel cats, as well as a lot of other stuff. He is a wealth of knowledge on the Santee Cooper catfish, and I can’t begin to put what he told me into a single post, even if I could remember all of it. I'll do the best I can, briefly:
    Basically, the channels here do appear a little different in some ways from channels in other places, and even in different areas of our lakes, perhaps due to genetics, but they are all the exact same species, Icalurus punctatus, of course, just ‘regional’ variations.
    Age, health, diet, along with other variables including competition for food, can affect the fish in different ways, causing those “humps” to be more prominent (or not), body musculature and overall appearance (color, length vs. girth). Remember all those long, lanky Blues you caught earlier this year in Moultrie?
    Even the texture (firm, mushy) or odor of the flesh can be affected by their overall health. Usually fish with well-defined musculature (shoulders) are very healthy fish with a good diet, such as these in the lakes system. Jim stated that even the fish in the Lake Marion may appear different; i.e., lean vs. thick-bodied, less pronounced muscles, color, etc., than even the fish in Lake Moultrie.
    I know I’ve simplified this explanation, but hopefully it will help explain your question a little.

    Oh, I think, personally, that the big lips are adapted for those territorial skirmishes with the Arkansas Blues. :wink:
     
  5. catch & release

    catch & release New Member

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    178
    State:
    SC
    Thanks Tommy. I've always said you could take 5 blues out of Marion and 5 out of Moultrie and I could guess the correct lake on 9 out of 10. I didn't know the channels looked different here cause I seldom fish anywhere else, but I do know those little 2-3 pound rascals put up a great fight!
     
  6. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Like you, Ed, I catch the vast majority of my fish from the santee system, so I've never paid much attention to that either, at least compared to anyplace else, but I have noticed how some of them appear a little different from others.
    I've seen a few catches that have made me believe for a long time that blues and channels will cross breed, and now I'm told that they can, indeed, although it is not a common thing in the wild. They share some of the same type breeding habitat, and the spawning temps overlap, too, so it's not impossible.
     
  7. Smuggo

    Smuggo New Member

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    114
    State:
    sc
    Channels do get big and are often confused for Blues when they get up in size. Maybe some of the smaller Channels show this (the resemblance to Blues) in the Santee Cooper system.
     
  8. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    Tommy once again you come thru with a wealth of information, thanks.I think thats similar to what I read in an old In-Fisherman mag a while back.The channel cats in Lake Greenwood look alot different than the channels in Moultrie, I inspected some real good today and theres definately a difference.
     
  9. Gomer

    Gomer New Member

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    261
    State:
    ladson,sc
    CHRIS,I think Toms wealth of fishing information is one to be UNMATCHED!!! I think it is due to his contacts because he's always talking to people and geathering more info, but the main thing I LOVE about TOMMY is he OPENLY and WILLINGLY SHARES this information to help other fishermen become better and stronger fisherman.This is also why I like this site sooo much because of guys like you,roundo,foxhound, and catfishrus JUST to name a quick few which pass on such a vast knowledge of experince to us lesser few to grasp and use to improve our fishing game.
     
  10. rivercatsc

    rivercatsc New Member

    Messages:
    1,990
    State:
    South Caro
    Tommy I am glad that you mentioned enterbreeding cause about 3 years ago my wife caught a "catfish" in the pee dee that was around 25lbs but almost black in color with big lips. At first i thought it was a blue and it just didnt look right to me and the caught a blue similar size and put the side by side no comparision different fish. So I kept him alive until monday in 1 of my big bait tanks and had our local biologist look at him and he said it was a mature channel and that alot of people mistake big mature channels for blues. I though it was a mix breed but he told me that was immpossible which I though was alittle hard to belive that the spawn in the same place in a river that is flowing and nothing ever gets mixed up. I have seen very few fish since then that even looked like it maybe 2 or 3 until this year I was on the way to Packs landing in santee when Jody(extremecatfishing)asked me to stop and look at this huge bullhead a guy had caught it was 50+lbs. When I got there it was that excact kinda fish we she had caught that day in the river but the biologist said it was a blue. Oh well enough rambling I just have always wondered myself about these odd looking cats.
     
  11. krowbar

    krowbar New Member

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    664
    State:
    South Caro
    Most of the channel catfish I've caught in Santee have the humps on the head. Always wondered why that was so. Thanks for filling me in everyone.
     
  12. JDWILLIS39

    JDWILLIS39 New Member

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    422
    State:
    NC
    Interesting reading. Thanks for the information guys
     
  13. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    James, I've been told that, while they do crossbreed, it is very uncommon; just Ma Nature's way of keeping the species pure, I guess, but over time, most anything can happen, I guess.
     
  14. rivercatsc

    rivercatsc New Member

    Messages:
    1,990
    State:
    South Caro
    I meant to add he did say that there are white, black,brown, yellow, pretty, ugly, long, short, fat, and skiny kids arent there so catfish are the same way they all dont come out looking the same.LOL I promise he told me that and that is the most logical way of looking at it I guess. Im glad I am one of the good looking ones.LOL