Winter Tactics?

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by Blacky, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    I want my first fish of 2008 to be a flathead. Have already tried in my local river with no avail. I will now step it up and try a warm water discharge where I know flathead have been caught in the wintertime.

    Here's my questions:

    1. Bait-should I use live or cut bait? The water is 70-80 degrees.
    2. Daytime or nighttime?
    3. Deep or shallow?

    thank you for any help.
     
  2. CatAngler

    CatAngler New Member

    Messages:
    312
    State:
    Omaha NE
    My suggestions would be;

    -Live bait, whatever is local to your waters.

    -I personally like flat heading in the evenings (6:00pm or after) all the way up to 4:00am.


    -If fishing in the evenings I would target water in the 3' to 7' range.




    J
     

  3. tncatfishing

    tncatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    916
    State:
    clk. tn
    Try live bait, shad , bluegill. Fish the shallows at night and deeper water during the day.
     
  4. yellowlabman45

    yellowlabman45 New Member

    Messages:
    23
    State:
    arkansas
    been wanting to try the warm water discharge to let us know how you do good luck
     
  5. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Do you guys think that these wintertime flatheads in the warm water discharge are actively feeding or are the wintering and are in a dormant state?
     
  6. catfishscotty

    catfishscotty Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,388
    State:
    mo
    70 to 80 degree water temp they will be feeding for sure with the large amount of bait fish there its like a all u can eat buffet for them!!!!!!!!!
     
  7. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    Haven't ever caught a flat worth mentioning in the winter, I am sure they would be around that discharge though.
     
  8. FATFLATTIE

    FATFLATTIE New Member

    Messages:
    2,170
    State:
    ILM, NC
    Give it a shot man. I'd try using both fresh cut bait as well as live. Just gotta figure out what your particular fish like to eat. I'd have some rods both deep and shallow. That way you can let the fish tell you what depth and bait to use on most every trip. If there's a hot water discharge you can catch them, probably not as many as you're used to but they will be there.
     
  9. river scum

    river scum New Member

    Messages:
    3,474
    State:
    hooterville indiana
    try all those options blacky, you fishing uncharted territory bro. good luck on your quest!!!!! ill be watching for the video.
     
  10. Dan the Fisherman

    Dan the Fisherman New Member

    Messages:
    169
    State:
    Ramsey, Illinois
    Blacky there is no wrong answer. I fish a warm water discharge quite frequently. Yes the big flats are chowing down. Live bait native to your waters will do the trick. My personal trick is to cut along both sides the dorsal fin of the bluegill or whatever bait you have. Pull out the whole fin. This will not kill a bluegill, but make him a wounded target with a little smell of blood. I would locate in the shallow water just upstream of deep water hole. I prefer setting up at least an half hour before dark and fish two or three hours after dark this time of year. This works for me, hopefully it will work for you
     
  11. katkiller77

    katkiller77 New Member

    Messages:
    1,549
    State:
    dayton ohio
    warm water yes very much i agree i get adventurous and go out to the power plant on the gmr. i have seen people get flats with bluegill and baby carp both native to the gmr i have gotten eaters size channels. good luck guy.
     
  12. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    This is my friend with a 22lber caught on Friday January 4, 2008 at the same warm water dishcharge in PA.

    They are present and FEEDING!
     
  13. CJ21

    CJ21 New Member

    Messages:
    4,303
    State:
    Montgomery, Alabama
    Very nice fish, Blacky.
     
  14. john catfish young

    john catfish young New Member

    Messages:
    3,070
    State:
    Kentucky
    Yes ....you can catch the flatties year round at warm water discharges. I would try live bait as well as cutbait. I would try early morning( 3 am-8am) also (5 pm- 10pm) and I would fish some poles deep and some poles shallow, leaving no stone unturned. Let us know how it goes. Also , I would look at time tables for fish to be active:eek:oooh:
     
  15. wayne1967

    wayne1967 New Member

    Messages:
    528
    State:
    Missouri
    The warm water discharge around here in the winter have so many gar stacked up in it a bait wouldn't last a minute.
     
  16. prostreetS10

    prostreetS10 New Member

    Messages:
    898
    State:
    ohio
    nice fish bro thanks for sharing
     
  17. bull68dawg

    bull68dawg New Member

    Messages:
    20
    State:
    Georgia
    Ive had the most luck in the winter on cut gills...For some reason i think they dont like wasting much energy in the winter months...My biggest Flat has been caught in the winter on an injured gill,scaled on one side and a fin removed...but that is just me
     
  18. great pappy cat

    great pappy cat Active Member

    Messages:
    728
    State:
    P.A
    Hey blacky,as you know i know the warm water your fishing as well as anyone:cool2:.Next time you venture to my neck of the woods send me a pm Ill show you around down there.I'd say dusk to a few hours into night fall are your best shot, dawn is also good but its warmer for the dusk bite
     
  19. Mizzbigcat

    Mizzbigcat New Member

    Messages:
    374
    State:
    Warren County Ohio
    There is nothing more thrilling than hauling a huge shovelhead onto the bank, I intend for that to be my first fish of the season also, but all I fish for is catfish. I have the most luck fishing for flatheads at night in large, deep ponds or lakes. What river are you fishing in here? I haven't heard of shovelheads living in rivers around SW Ohio, but the Ohio River has some huge (20lb) Channel Cats in it, and the hot water discharge area is always active. Just remember, the bigger the bait, the bigger the catch. Good luck!
     
  20. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,187
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    I would take a different approach for winter time flatheads. Look for the deepest holes with lots of structure. Try downsizing your baits and use cut bait rather than live. Easy prey is the key to catching dormant flatheads below 50 degree water temps. Have you ever caught a winter time flathead and noticed its like reeling in a heavy log rather than the flathead fighting with all his power like they do in the summer?