Fishing Tips For Catching The Flathead Catfish

Freshwater catfish is a quite popular fishing species among fishermen especially recreational and commercial fishermen. This species of fish is divided into various subspecies out of which the flathead catfish is one of the ugliest ones. The botanical name of the flathead catfish is “Pylodictus Olivaris” and this fish species is found in a huge abundance in many parts of North America.

Unlike many other subspecies belonging to the catfish family, the flathead catfish is fairly big in size and has a good commercial value in the market mainly because of their huge demand. The taste of the flesh of this subspecies has been recognized as the tastiest among the whole family.

The growth of this species is also very fast as compared to the other subspecies of the same family. In some parts of the world, these fishes have been recognized as invasive species and have been found to destroy the natural habitats of the native fishes in those particular areas.


Tips For Catching The Flathead Catfish


Outer appearances of this fish are very unique and it is not easily confused with other similar species. As the name suggests, it has a large flat head and body with a square tail. The color of this fish varies from environment to environment but most commonly it has yellowish brown sides and can easily be recognized via close observation.

Here are a few other things that will help you trap this fish out of water:

  • This species of fish is found in abundance in the Great Lakes in North America. Ideally, the flathead catfish is found in large water bodies where the current of the water is a bit slow. They can also be located in deep holes and depressions in large water bodies.


  • The flathead catfish is highly active during the night time instead of day time. Thus, night time is often the best time for going fishing for this species.


  • Angling is supposed to be the best technique among all the techniques of fishing for catching this fish. Commercial fishermen may also opt to the technique of netting or trapping for catching this fish based on their requirements and available resources.


  • From the fishing point of view, the flathead catfish is not very human-friendly and is also quite aggressive in nature. Thus, on being caught these fishes usually give their 100% in fighting back. Moreover, this fish possesses sharp and heavy spines along with impressive jaw power for its protection. It is advised to kill it as soon as caught in order to minimize any risk of injuries.


  • The flathead catfish gets attracted to live bait heavily. Other small fishes, insects, worms and other similar types of live baits work the best for attracting this fish.


  • For catching fully grown (adult) flathead catfish large sized live baits are preferred. In this case, other large fishes including but not limited to bullheads, carp, sunfish, goldfish etc. works the best.


  • Use of heavy and strong fishing gear is highly recommended to catch and handle this fish because of the size and aggressiveness in the nature of these species. A fully developed flathead catfish on an average grow up to the length of 155 cm and can weigh up to nearly 55-60 kilograms.

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