coastalfreak

Best Catfish Baits

23 posts in this topic

Hey folks, so I’m new to cat fishing and I’m looking for the best baits, primarily for channels and bullheads. I’ve been looking at prepared baits and those preserved shad and such in store. Not really the type of guy to use live or dead fish that I catch unless I gut hook it. Thanks.

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You are best off using live fish that you catch and you make dead with a knife.

 

Bluegill, carp, and sucker are tough to beat.

 

Live crawfish can not be beat.

 

Night crawlers and red worms work great, but result in large amounts of bycatch aka "bait".

 

If you want a prepared bait, Triple S dip bait (formerly known as Sonny's) is the best. 

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1 min ago, Beastly Backlash said:

You are best off using live fish that you catch and you make dead with a knife.

 

Bluegill, carp, and sucker are tough to beat.

 

Live crawfish can not be beat.

 

Night crawlers and red worms work great, but result in large amounts of bycatch aka "bait".

 

If you want a prepared bait, Triple S dip bait (formerly known as Sonny's) is the best. 

What size hook would you recommend for the night crawler tactic?

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you will think im ****ting you but slim jim's....take a little bit of slim jim and shrimp and i can assure you...catfish will be all over it....

I have over 40 fish in like 5 hours using slim jim....they like the spicy meat and oil....they can smell it for miles....good luck...

 

 

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All good advice.

 

I like circle hooks fwiw.  

 

For channels and bullheads I used all sorts of stink baits and internet recipes, and nothign seems to work as well as a nice earthworm or freshly dead cutbait of local fish.

 

I know they say crayfish, but I havent found the love there yet, and hotdogs are, imo , overrated.  

 

There's an absurd amount of info on the net about catfishing.  

 

 

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I used alot of different things. Cut baits you catch, chicken livers, hot dogs, bacon, worms. When i was a kid older guys told me to use dial soap. They use to catch big ass catties with it near the soap factory in the town i grew up

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1 hour ago, StripersBR said:

When i was a kid older guys told me to use dial soap

 

Hear the same from old timers when I was younger.   Side by side, My kids slayed the channels (and whites?) and bullheads on worms and shiners, while I sat there soaking a piece of soap...   lol.

 

Made for a fun evening of laughs.

 

Tried squid and clams too.  Just as (in)effective for me.

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17 hours ago, coastalfreak said:

What size hook would you recommend for the night crawler tactic?

 

A 1/0 j-hook with the nightcrawler threaded on the hook so it appears natural. I also make crawler harnesses and rig the crawlers up using two size 4 hooks.

 

A lot of guys I have seen just ball the crawler up on the hook and it does not draw half the bites as a naturally rigged crawler.

 

If you are kayak fishing or fishing off a boat consider using a crawler harness with a spinning and drift if or troll it.

Edited by Beastly Backlash

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32 mins ago, Beastly Backlash said:

 

A 1/0 j-hook with the nightcrawler threaded on the hook so it appears natural. I also make crawler harnesses and rig the crawlers up using two size 4 hooks.

 

A lot of guys I have seen just ball the crawler up on the hook and it does not draw half the bites as a naturally rigged crawler.

 

If you are kayak fishing or fishing off a boat consider using a crawler harness with a spinning and drift if or troll it.

Thanks for the input. Went out this morning with light spinning gear and small bottom rigs and caught my first channel cat using hot dogs marinated in garlic. 

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25 mins ago, coastalfreak said:

Thanks for the input. Went out this morning with light spinning gear and small bottom rigs and caught my first channel cat using hot dogs marinated in garlic. 

Hotdogs can work, they are loaded with fat, salt, and proteins.

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A fishing buddy used to cut fresh veal liver into about 3/4" to 1" squares and soak them in garlic powder, in zip lock bags for a few days, in the refrigerator. Fresh worked far better than spoiled.

 

We used that as our bait when targeting catfish and most that we caught were Channels, and a few Bullheads. Occasionally we caught a Blue cat.,  Any of the livers work, but the veal liver stayed on the hook longer. 

 

We fished for them often in the colder months, but same bait would be used anytime and we did well with it.

 

We used 1/0 & 2/0 size hooks, and I like snelled rigs that had a few beads and a small spinner blade. Channels like live baits, and the spinner attracted them, and they will readily eat the liver. 

 

Some of the cats we caught were up to about 10 lbs. These were good eating size catfish. 

 

If you're after the big, monster cats, use live baits. Live Gizzard Shad works well, and some of the cats don't seem to mind if the baits are dead. I've heard that some folks here ( Santee Cooper) also will use White Perch, or Bluegills, both live, but the Shad seem to be preferred . 

Edited by Jim H

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1 hour ago, Jim H said:

A fishing buddy used to cut fresh veal liver into about 3/4" to 1" squares and soak them in garlic powder, in zip lock bags for a few days, in the refrigerator. Fresh worked far better than spoiled.

 

We used that as our bait when targeting catfish and most that we caught were Channels, and a few Bullheads. Occasionally we caught a Blue cat.,  Any of the livers work, but the veal liver stayed on the hook longer. 

 

We fished for them often in the colder months, but same bait would be used anytime and we did well with it.

 

We used 1/0 & 2/0 size hooks, and I like snelled rigs that had a few beads and a small spinner blade. Channels like live baits, and the spinner attracted them, and they will readily eat the liver. 

 

Some of the cats we caught were up to about 10 lbs. These were good eating size catfish. 

 

If you're after the big, monster cats, use live baits. Live Gizzard Shad works well, and some of the cats don't seem to mind if the baits are dead. I've heard that some folks here ( Santee Cooper) also will use White Perch, or Bluegills, both live, but the Shad seem to be preferred . 

 

What I have often times done when after just a bunch of eaters is to soak beef liver in chicken liver. Chicken liver is usually far bloodier then beef liver. The beef liver acts like a sponge and soaks up a lot of those jucies.

 

And yes keep that meat fresh, spoiled is no good. Especially if you find yourself hankering for a snack while out fishing.

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