I haven’t talked a lot about flathead catfish here on the in the past. I have covered some basic tips, tricks and information but haven’t gone into near the detail that I have on blue catfish and channel catfish. With the Learn To Catch Catfish survey running and receiving the initial round of responses one of the immediate areas identified was flathead catfish are topic we need to cover more of.
The reason I have not covered flatheads as much as the other catfish species is the level of difficulty there is in catching them. Not that they are impossible to catch but when it comes to being consistently successful catching them I would rank flatheads the most elusive fish to catch behind channels and blues. Like anything else, with time on the water and experience they become much easier to catch and you can catch them quite consistently but the level of effort to get to that point is much higher (in my opinion) that what is required to catch blues and channels.
Flathead fishing is also traditionally what I refer to as “slow fishing”, meaning there is a lot of waiting. There are always exceptions and days were the fishing is amazing but as a good general rule I would say it is much slower fishing that targeting the other types of catfish.
I have a few favorites on the best time of year to catch flathead catfish and all for very different reasons.
March and early spring is a great time because the fish are coming out of the cold water period where they have been lethargic, not feeding as heavily and have lost a lot of weight. When the water warms flathead catfish present with a ferocious appetite and are feeding heavily and working to add that lost body weight back.
Summer is another favorite because I enjoy the peace and tranquility of fishing at night and fishing for big yellow cats at night is usually very productive.
Early Fall, especially October is another favorite as the fish are usually feeding heavily in preparation for the cold water period. This time of year has produces some of the biggest flatheads for me over the years.
In this week’s Catfishing Quick Tip video (below) we cover the best time of year to catch flathead catfish so check it out. Once your done watching the video make sure you head over to the Learn To Catch Catfish community and share your flathead catfish pictures and ask any questions you might have about these fish!