Tips On What To Look For When Targeting Catfish

Blue CatfishSo you’ve been out at the lake or on the river bank trying to catch more catfish, but the results haven’t been promising. What have you been doing wrong? Well, you aren’t alone on this one. There are many people out there facing a similar predicament.

Don’t worry though, because by the time you are done reading this piece, you’ll know exactly what to do, and you’ll be catching more catfish during your next fishing expedition. These 3 tips are simple and straightforward.


Study The Lake’s Topography

For starters, it is important to focus more on the topography of the lake, and less on the rods, reels, and lines (even though they are significant as well).

Most anglers have the tendency of over-hyping themselves on the latest rods and reels, with the hope that something “different” is going to make a difference and let you catch more catfish. Actually, the type of rod or reel you have purchased doesn’t guarantee that you will begin to haul more catfish on your line. You don’t have to break the bank for a good catfish reel. A good spincast reel can help you bring home just as many catfish as an expensive baitcast model.

So, what is the solution? Successful anglers are those who are experts at locating the fish, which is only achievable by studying the lake’s topography. That is, determine where the most catfish are found.


Pick The Right Rigging Technique

You will have to choose the appropriate rig based on the fishing technique, where your target location is, and the depth the fish are holding the water column.
The problem is that there are lots of rigs out there, thus placing you in some kind of a quandary on what to pick.

Suggestions include the Slip Sinker and the Santee Rig, with the latter having a foam peg float that helps lift bait off the bottom. The best advice is to experiment with both rigs, either interchangeably or side-by-side and see which works best for you.


Always Go With Fresh Bait

In my opinion, bait is, without a doubt, the most important aspect discussed. And, there are no shortcuts about this. If you are looking to catch more catfish, you must learn how to catch fresh bait. I would also caution against using frozen bait…it is never as effective as fresh bait.

If you are intimidated by catching your own bait, then you can always experiment with many other bait options. However, nothing beats fresh bait, especially if you’d like to catch a big ole yellow cat.


Some example of baits for catfish include:

Skipjack herring 
Gizzard shad
And basically anything that’s of the form of a native fish

Final Thoughts Anchoring or Drifting

With the three aforementioned helpful tips on how to catch more catfish, most people find themselves wondering on which technique (other than angling) is best. Is it drift or anchor? This depends on certain factors.

Anchor technique is fishing from a “still” boat, and Drift technique is means you move the boat around.

The technique you choose to use depends are different factors. The anchor method allows you to focus on a certain section of the lake. You’ll have to a study on the topography to find which area is best.

On the other hand, the drift method allows you to cover more water, thus increasing your odds of catching more catfish. But, at the same time, you might only be wasting time covering unproductive areas.

These are some great tips to get you started on catching more catfish during your next fishing trip. Good luck catching the next big haul!