Skittish channel catfish!

Discussion in 'Channel Catfish' started by Philiagorillia, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. Philiagorillia

    Philiagorillia New Member

    Messages:
    296
    State:
    Missouri
    Im having an awful time catchin cats this summer on the lakes i regularly fish on. It almost seems that they are just tapping at the bate and not really latching onto it and hookin themselves. All the cats i've caught in the last two months i've had to literally set the hook myself and hold the poles because they would just tap at them. Any specific reason for them being like this? Could it be that they are farm raised and stocked by the conservation and just use to being fed leading them not to bite like a catfish that is wild and not farm raised?
     
  2. Bacardipr05

    Bacardipr05 New Member

    Messages:
    1,424
    State:
    Pennsylvan
    Channel cats are known to do this from time to time. Especially the smaller ones are you using too heavy of a weight. It could be that they are feeling the resistance and dropping the bait. What type of bait are using? Try and switch to some different bait and smaller weights or rig. Maybe it isn't the cats that are pecking at the bait but other "bait snatcher" fish stealing the bait. I hope this helps maybe someone has some other input.
     

  3. Philiagorillia

    Philiagorillia New Member

    Messages:
    296
    State:
    Missouri
    Most of the time im using a 1/2 or 3/4oz weight and its mostly nightcrawlers im using as bait. Just seems the only time i can catch them is when i have to hold the pole and literally set the hook the minute they nibble at the bait. Just this sunday i caught 3 and all of them where 3-4lbs a piece and they just tapped at my bait like that and i just gave the line a good yank and sure enough i hooked them cleanly. I dunno whats going on...
     
  4. bobby-catfishing

    bobby-catfishing New Member

    Messages:
    404
    State:
    Highland Villag
    Phil,
    I'm having the same issue down here in Texas. Just because the bite is light doesn't mean it's a little fish. I switched over from my standard 20 lb gear to 8 lb spinning outfitswith a quality medium action graphite rod. I'm using a 1/4 oz weight, 12 inch leader and #6 or #4 treble hook with Danny King's punch bait. Sometimes I get a light tap, sometimes the rod just starts to feel heavy. Set the hook when anything feels different. Remember that hook sets are free. If you miss the fish, just enjoy the breeze.

    I remember way back when, I was fishing at a pier down at a local lake. I had my rod leaning against the rail and you could see the rod tip just slightly bouncing from some fish pecking at the bait. I had an older gentlmen that was watching my rod bounce. He told me "Son, you gonna' catch that fish?" I said that I was waiting for the fish to really take it. He then said "Boy. That fish aint playin' with your bait with his hands. Set the hook!"

    I'll never forget that conversation. I wish I would have gotten that gentleman's name because I would thank him for a lot of the fish that I've caught since then. I just thought I'd share that same bit of valuable knowledge with everyone.
     
  5. Philiagorillia

    Philiagorillia New Member

    Messages:
    296
    State:
    Missouri

    Thats definetly some good info. Alot of my catfish have been caught this way, i get sick of seein the tip of the rod just bounce a little and i just say what the heck and give'er a yank and sometimes i get'em and sometimes i dont.
     
  6. tomcat85

    tomcat85 New Member

    Messages:
    966
    State:
    uh
    I've been doing great with no weight, get some khale hooks and put a huge chunk o liver on the hook. I haven't had to set the hook in a while.

    Tom
     
  7. yownee

    yownee New Member

    Messages:
    2
    State:
    california
    Yah!!! i had the same problem from late July through August. Im not sure why they werent biting, but the bites have been starting to pick up again.

    I've been having better luck about 5 or 6 ft from reeds during early morning and sunset. maybe this will work for ya
     
  8. Bacardipr05

    Bacardipr05 New Member

    Messages:
    1,424
    State:
    Pennsylvan
    I was just going to suggest what Bobby did switch to a lighter rod and line. I have a Shimano Stimula rod with a Sonora 4000 with ten pound test. I can feel just about every "tap" on it.
     
  9. Duckpoor

    Duckpoor New Member

    Messages:
    184
    State:
    Illinois
    Ya know when I was just a pup..many years ago, and I could not get on to tight lining as it was called then..
    My Dad put together a Cat Catching Rig for me out of a busted Balsa Crappie bobber, a couple split shot and a #4 or #6 offset, big eyed, Blued, bait hook.

    He would set the Bobber deep enough so it would almost lay over and not support much if any weight. The split shot held things in place and no matter how light the bite I could tell what mr. wiskers was up to.

    He would get me a couple set in stought forked sticks and turn me loose to catch Bait Blue Gill with the instructions to "leave em be till they Cut a Wake.. "

    They would now and then .. and I still use that style rig when I get where I can.
     
  10. Philiagorillia

    Philiagorillia New Member

    Messages:
    296
    State:
    Missouri
    Well, we'll see how it goes this weekend maybe. Its suppose to rain all week and weekend off and on, so i might try to fish this weekend and see if they are active during the rain and biting better!
     
  11. 450rider

    450rider New Member

    Messages:
    10
    State:
    Illinois
    Try to use as little weight as possible.Also try keeping the rod in your hand with the line tight.As soon as they pick it up drive the hook home.Sometimes a bite like that can be turtles too.
     
  12. yeppa

    yeppa New Member

    Messages:
    636
    State:
    Topeka, Kansas
    Try eating a sandwich, or visiting the bushes--works for me.