Smallest flathead catfish

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by noodlin Will, Sep 25, 2007.

  1. noodlin Will

    noodlin Will New Member

    Messages:
    54
    State:
    oklahoma
    For many years of fishing for catfish I had never seen a baby flathead catfish. That is until this year while fishing one Saturday morning on a small river with my bait catching gear. I was trying to catch some small channel cats to stock a new pond in a park near my house when I caught a baby (this years hatch) flathead. Actually thought it was a perch at first because it was dark colored unlike the channel cats I had been catching. to tell you the truth this is the highlight of my fishing this year even thought this fish is only about 5 inches long. It is now my pet fish in my aquarium and doing great (eats right out of my hand) the appearance and behavior of the babes is just like you took a 50#er and shrunk it down. Sticks close to cover all the time and fearless ate out of my hand after 1st day in captivity.

    Is this an unusual catch or has anyone else caught a baby flathead?
     
  2. KATTERMAN

    KATTERMAN New Member

    Messages:
    182
    State:
    OKLA
    i have never caught a baby flat but last night i threw out some corn waited about and hr and then fished with a vry small perch hook hoping to catch some carp for bait.something kept pecking at bait but i could,nt get hook up to whatever it was kept trying finaly caught one it was a channel that might have been 1 1/2",they would hit it as soon as u would drop in the water they must have been a bunch thoses little dudes.i was using worm for bait but that would be 2 cool to cathc a little flat
     

  3. sarSWAMPFOX

    sarSWAMPFOX New Member

    Messages:
    381
    State:
    Union, South Caroilna
    We were fishing in a tournament last year at Monticello. Drifting small bits of cut bait. We had not really done any good so we decided to reel it and change locations on the lake. As we were pullinging in the drift socks,the young bot that was fishing with us said "Hey there is a little fish on this rod". After close inspection it was a flathead about 2" long. Surprising to me cause I had never caught a flathead at this lake. We kept it in our bait tank and showed it to the other fishers in the tourny. All were amazed to see such a small flathead. We then released it to grow up and get bigger. Like you said it looked just like the larger fish just miniature version.
     
  4. SSgt Fishslayer

    SSgt Fishslayer New Member

    Messages:
    1,241
    State:
    south carolina
    ok gents this is freaking weird. i had never caught or seen a baby flat until this past weekend, and i caught one that was about 4 inches long. it looked like my middle finger with gills and fins. but it had a mottled brown and green coloring. the only way i knoew it was a flatty was its head. i have a picture of it but i have to get it developed. as soon as i get it i will post it up for you guys.
     
  5. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    WOW guys, the smallest one I have ever seen is one I caught and it was 4 or 5 inches long. I swear its little head was half as wide as its body was long lol. At the time I didn't even know it was a flathead. That came years later lol.
     
  6. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    Now I have caught baby channel cats down to an inch long. I'll be fishing this 8 inch deep section of the river for gills and all the sudden a school of mini channels moves in and sometimes the hook is longer than the catfish. If you hold these fish up to a light you can see through them lol.
     
  7. chris45601

    chris45601 New Member

    Messages:
    357
    State:
    ohio
    Yeah im debating whether or not the fish in my fish tank is a mad tom or a flat head, it's about 4 inches long has that blunt tail and dark with a big spot of yellow on his back and a big old flat head. So if he gets any bigger i know hes a flattie and will release him back into a lake when he gets to big
     
  8. CatfishHateMe

    CatfishHateMe New Member

    Messages:
    669
    State:
    Il
    havnt even cought one but id like to for the aquarium. that and a baby shortnose gar. or a gator gar would be cool to:roll_eyes:
     
  9. Montgomery

    Montgomery New Member

    Messages:
    257
    State:
    OHIO
    i really dont think you can tell a diffenerence in bullhead or flattheads that young. they look identical . same large head and colors . if you all that say you seen them . how did you tell the difference . i had baby bull heads in aguarium. and they was furosious man. acted just like a big old flatt. i have even had those red tail cats and tiger shuvel nose cats from brazil in my aquariums. had one 2 foot long . but seriously i would like to know how you could tell the difference.
     
  10. Dadoftwo

    Dadoftwo New Member

    Messages:
    382
    State:
    Oklahoma City
    Never have caught one that small but it would be cool in a fish tank.
     
  11. noodlin Will

    noodlin Will New Member

    Messages:
    54
    State:
    oklahoma
    actually if you have ever seen a flathead any flathead you will be able to identify the baby it actually looks EXACTALLY like the adult version. And in my opinion very different from any other similar species. I have caught a lot of brown and black bullheads and I can tell the difference in a second.
     
  12. Howie Ketchdem

    Howie Ketchdem New Member


    Get on the net and look up pictures of stone cats. If it is greenish grey in color you have most likely caught a stonecat. i catch them in the river i fish most often. I called the DNR and asked if they were baby flats and he said no they are not baby flats there stonecats, i was disapointed with what he had said but later looked up stonecats online and sure enough it was a stonecat..But they only get about 8-10" long but look just like a flattie
     
  13. prostreetS10

    prostreetS10 New Member

    Messages:
    898
    State:
    ohio
    Me personally have never caught a baby cat. but while at a local pond cast netting some shad wwe caught a little baby catfish. We didn't know it was a flat at first. but my buddy put it in his home fish tank. kept feeding it and it ended up growing to about 10-12 inches long and u could tell it was a flathead. pretty neat to have in a freshwater fish tank. and he ended up throwing it back in to the place we caught him from when he got to big for his tank.
     
  14. Flamekeeper

    Flamekeeper New Member

    Messages:
    2,314
    State:
    Louisville, Ken
    Pic's Please,

    I and the other bro's would like to see the little fella.:smile2:
     
  15. noodlin Will

    noodlin Will New Member

    Messages:
    54
    State:
    oklahoma
    I will get some pics together soon my little flathead and a bullhead of similar size that should clear things up.
     
  16. wylie catter

    wylie catter New Member

    Messages:
    675
    State:
    South Carolina
    I thought bullheads had barbs on the ends of the fins like channels and blues, and flatheads didn't. Isn't that a clear way to tell the difference.
     
  17. SSgt Fishslayer

    SSgt Fishslayer New Member

    Messages:
    1,241
    State:
    south carolina
    from what i knw we dont have bull heads out ehre. i have caught them mmany times back in SC but i have yet to see any out here in the 5 years i have been here. and i catfish alot, so i am sure i would have seen at least one or 2. but you are right they do look very much alike when they are smaller. i will have to send a picture when i get them back. but this was definately a flatty.
     
  18. Michael Jake

    Michael Jake New Member

    Messages:
    808
    State:
    Troy, Missouri
    Will, about 2 yrs. ago in late August I caught one about 5 to 6 inches and your right they look exactly like the adult version only smaller. Caught it shallow off the tip of a wing dike on the Missouri river with a little 2 inch bluegill. The bait was 1/3 it’s size and the hook penetrated the lower jaw. Cute little guy and I thought it would be awesome to have it in a fish tank but since I didn’t have one it was released to grow up and do what flatheads do. When releasing him I thought after going for such a large bait in proportion to it size, this little fella was going to grow up to be one bad flathead.
     
  19. JAinSC

    JAinSC Active Member

    Messages:
    1,514
    State:
    South Carolina
    Here's a cute lettle fella that we saw on the river in September
     

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  20. caneycat

    caneycat New Member

    Messages:
    196
    State:
    Texas
    I have not caught a baby yella yet but i wont one for my 55 gallon fish tank!:big_smile: