blue catfish spawning

I am looking for ideas for cheap and durable spawning structure for blue catfish in a small pond now under construction.

Flatheads, on the other hand, are less migratory and more likely to be found in the same locales season after season. Catfish leave the main body of water and migrate up smaller streams and creeks to spawn. I am thinking large plastic trash cans with a hole cut in the lid? Concrete revetment also attracts spawning cats. The revetment may be covered with riprap to further stabilize it. These in turn feed larger streams flowing into the lake, and they, too, warm up before the deeper main lake.

Here are some strategies for dealing with the catfish spawning and reluctant fish. This large catfish is distinguished by its blueish back and side, lack of black spots and humped back near the dorsal fin. And because fish in a system don't all spawn at the same time, a section of river or lake may contain pre-spawn, spawn and post-spawn catfish. Watch for big boulders changing to smaller rocks or slides of rocks creating underwater points. When female cats are laying eggs and males are guarding their nests, they're often are hard to find and difficult to entice.

Catfish usually ambush prey from behind current breaks -- humps, holes or trees -- near the confluence of the tributary with the main lake or river. Largemouth bass were spawning at the same time, and a lure worked near shoreline shallows produced one on nearly every other cast. FOIA | Privacy Policy Banks covered with riprap also are key fishing areas during spawning season. May was bluegill time; scores of these fat panfish could be taken from a single bed when using crickets for bait. Blue catfish are native to the Mississippi River basin. Flatheads select sites such as hollow logs, excavated caves in clay banks, root masses from downed trees or manmade structures such as old tires, car bodies and metal drums. All Rights Reserved. A blue catfish will also have 30 -36 anal fin rays. They commonly weigh 20-40 pounds and can live up to 40 years.

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The next evening we each caught more than 50 fat white bass apiece. Unless you understand why this occurs, you're likely to return from a late-spring or early-summer fishing trip frustrated and perplexed. account_circle 

To stabilize the river banks and prevent erosion, bulldozers are used to smooth the shoreline, then the soil is covered with concrete matting, or revetment. "They're swimming up the creeks and piling onto the shoals," he said. This one simple trick will trigger more bass strikes on a jerkbait during the fall months. © 2015 All rights reserved. The male guards the fry until they leave. Spawning occurs in late spring or early summer in water temperatures of 70-75° F. Egg masses are deposited in cavities afforded by logs, brush or undercut riverbanks. Channel and blue catfish spawn at 70 to 84 degrees, but 80 to 81 degrees is considered best. The best fishing often is in tributary streams instead because, as the water temperature warms, catfish migrate upstream into tributaries to spawn. Catching 30 or more a day was a cinch.

Blue catfish deposit their eggs between rocks, in root wads, depressions, undercut banks or other areas protected from strong current. The previous record also was caught in the same Panhandle river. | See temporary closures and business changes, Texas Farm and Ranch Land Conservation Program.

Catfish enthusiasts who fish during the spawn may notice a sharp drop in catch rates because male catfish eat very little while protecting the nest. © 2020 Outdoor Sportsman Group. Average Size: 3 - 40 pounds, Approximate Maximum Size: About 120 pounds in recent years, although in the 1800's, 300-pound fish were caught from the Missouri River. Biology and Life History: The blue catfish is the largest freshwater sport fish found in Texas. Thus, headwater reaches attract catfish early in the season and are among the best catfishing areas this time of year. Spawning. "We need to get out there soon if we're going to catch some.". To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine. For example, if you normally fish in the main portion of a lake, you may find that catfish bites are rare during the spawning period if you continue fishing your flat-water hotspots.

Chesapeake Bay Blue Catfish is mild and flaky, with a taste similar to striped bass. Look for them near dams, bridges and causeways where engineers place the rocks to prevent erosion. and cookie statement. If you haven't had a bite after 15 to 20 minutes, troll up the bank until you find another likely spot and anchor again. This species is found in South Carolina Department of Natural Resources’ public fishing lakes and large impoundments such as lakes Wateree, Marion and Moultrie. After the female lays her mound of sticky yellow eggs, the male fertilizes the mass, drives the female from the nest and begins guard duty. However, most blue catfish are not sexually mature until they reach about 24 inches in length. [email protected] Blue catfish has a deeply forked tail fin. Give a Gift   The eggs hatch in six to 10 days (depending on water temperature), and the compact school of fry remains near the nest a few days before dispersing. Your contact information is used to deliver requested updates or to access your subscriber preferences.

Flatheads spawn at 66 to 75 degrees. Tie on a slip-bobber rig during late summer and load a cooler with suspended channel catfish. Manage My Subscriptions, archive  Range: Anglers are less likely to be stymied by flatheads that have seemingly disappeared. In South Carolina, blue catfish are found in almost every drainage. Watermen are encouraged to commercially harvest Chesapeake Bay Blue Catfish. The spawning habits of catfish differ greatly from those of other game fish, and fishing success may take a nosedive when blues, flatheads and channel cats are on their nests.

A sexually mature male selects and cleans a nest site and spawns with a female he lures there.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. If poor fishing is noticed and can't be attributed to other causes, the angler can wait a few days until the spawning peak passes and male cats are feeding more actively once again. Content of this site copyright Texas Parks and Wildlife Department unless otherwise noted. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets. For example, a pipe or log may attract catfish. Channel and blue catfish spawn at 70 to 84 degrees, but 80 to 81 degrees is considered best. When catfishing success is poor, it also may help to focus your fishing efforts in areas you might not previously have considered fishing.

Fortunately, the peak of the spawn is over in a few days. All of our major catfish species spawn during spring or summer when the water warms to an optimal temperature.

Editor's Note: An autographed copy of Keith Sutton's latest book, Catfishing: Beyond the Basics, is available for $22.45 (Arkansas residents, add sales tax) by sending a check or money order to C&C Outdoors, 15601 Mountain Dr., Alexander, AR 72002. Nevertheless, if you are diligent in your efforts and fish the proper locales, you're almost certain to discover a pattern that will enable you to catch fish even during this difficult time. In April, when the dogwoods bloomed, the crappie started bedding on my favorite lake.

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Your kitchen cupboards have some of the most effective catfish baits.

E-Newsletter Archive. Freshwater Fishes of South Carolina. Continue doing this, working your way upstream and fishing first one hole and then another. Celebrate with great food for your backyard BBQ or picnic with these outdoor recipes. Not surprisingly spawning begins at different times in different latitudes, progressing from south to north. Consumers should ask for Chesapeake Bay Blue Catfish at their local grocery store or restaurant.

For example, nesting activity often begins first in the headwaters area of a large lake.

South Carolina Guide to Freshwater Fishes. Unlike other catfish, the male and female both assist in guarding the eggs and the young while they remain in the nest. Some species of fish that are commonly mistaken for this species: Rohde, Fred C, Arndt, Rudolf G., Foltz, Jeffery W., Quattro, Joseph M. 2009. All of our major catfish species spawn during spring or summer when the water warms to an optimal temperature. It's easier than you think — and will put more big bass in your boat.

South Carolina State Record: 109 pounds 4 ounces (1991).

Big channel cats especially like this habitat, but blues and flatheads may gather as well if there are numerous nesting cavities available in crevices between the boulders.

Then, when you find a hole and feel like the boat is directly over it, pick out a reference spot on the bank.

Most fishing rods feature both an action and a power rating, but what do those ratings mean and how do you use them to select the right rod for different scenarios? Not surprisingly spawning begins at different times in different latitudes, progressing from south to north.

If water conditions are favorable, some active feeders will always be available to catch, so there may be no noticeable decline in fishing success. The best are those tributaries with a warm in-flow, such as creeks swollen by spring rains.

Other times, a difference in the rocks does the trick.

Cast your bait to the rocks in these areas and fish it right on bottom. Often, catfish strike simply because they view the bait as a threat to the nest.

Blue catfish bewilder many anglers. Phone Numbers | Accessibility | Catfish nest in holes eroded beneath these structures, and if a hole can be pinpointed with sonar, the angler can drop a bait right in front of the fish.

It may only be .3-.4 acres. The best fishing areas tend to be those where a small section of the bank has slightly different cover or structure than the rest of a long, look-alike stretch of riprap. The spawning behavior of blue catfish appears to be similar to that of channel catfish. Email subscriber privacy policy

He protects the nest from predators and fans the eggs with his fins to keep them aerated and free from sediments. Amazing Kayak Power and Control: Hobie's MirageDrive 360 Propulsion System, 10 Recipes for Your Backyard Get Together, How to Catch Suspended Catfish in Late Summer with Proven Tactics, New State Record Flathead Catfish Caught in Florida, Get on Board: Species for Beginner Anglers, Catch More Bass on a Jerkbait in the Cooler Months, Action and Power Ratings- How to Choose the Right Bass Rod, Understanding Reel Retrieve Ratios and How it Affects Lure Presentations.


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