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Joined: 12:35pm - May 30,07
Posts: 2774
Location: Alumacraft 14 Fisherman/Honda outboard

Post Posted: 08:42am - Aug 21,08 
I have decided to take on catfish. I am pretty ignorant on river fishing, ie smallmouth, walleye, and catfish. However with the purchase of the canoe I am trying to take on non-pond fishing. I even took the day off yesterday just to fish.

I hit my ponds and caught a couple of keeper size but small large mouths. Threw 'em back. I caught them on tube jigs. Using a long shank hook and burying the football jig weight into the tube. I was getting false hits with the hook any higher, letting the hook peak out of the streamers worked best, they swallowed it.

Next I hit another pond that I knew had active carp. I would cast for large mouth, and with the other rod I had a mustard treble hook with corn soaked on soy sauce. After about an hour and half I gave up at this spot as it wasn't producing anything. All the fish where jumping clear on the other side where the cat tails and lily ponds where too deep to cast from shore.

Next I hit the fox. I didn't have the canoe with me so I set up in a spot where I saw some inch size minnows swimming in schools. This spot was solid ground so there was no way to secure my rod. I casted out with Berkeley liver stink bait, and decided to cast around swirls and other movement I was seeing in the water. Next I saw a dying carp swim by. He was on his side, scales looked like wet toilet paper and the mouth was slowing taking in water. I decided to take off the treble hook and put a size 4 hook with the soy sauce and corn combination.

Sat for awhile, now I was starving and I forgot to pack a lunch, and decided to give up. I put the rod down, dumping the corn in the water. And did a few last cast before I called it quits. Sure enough I almost lost my rod. I threw down the other rod grab the rod on the floor before I last it and yanked. I started to reel it in a sure enough a 10-12 lbs cat was on the other end. I saw his mouth and he splashed like hell and I lost him. He straighten the hook.

I seem to have this problem a lot, snapped or straightened hooks. So this is where I need to ask for help.

#1. I need a stronger hook. What should I pick up? Treble or single? Large or small. Should I pick up single circle hooks?

#2. Am I not playing the fish enough. I see fly fisherman bring 20 lb carp on little hooks. So maybe I am just not playing him enough. Should I turn my reverse on when I hook him. I seem to lose them at shore or when the weight of the fish is out of the water. Should I net them and keep them under?

Thanks for any suggestions that will come my way.

Nothing makes a fish bigger than almost being caught.

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Joined: 09:46am - Dec 18,07
Posts: 507
Location: Costa,W.Va

Post Posted: 09:38am - Aug 21,08 
I've used the circle hooks while wading for cats and they work pretty good. But I'm cheap sometimes and just use the Eagle claw 1/0 snelled hooks when using livers(real ones not the berkley stuff)and do just as good. Only difference I've found so far is the circle hooks catch the fish in the side of the mouth whereas the other hooks tend to get farther down the mouth depending on how long you let them chew on it.


"Like minnows in a bucket..."


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Joined: 10:07am - Jun 2,04
Posts: 636
Location: Downers Grove

Post Posted: 02:00pm - Aug 21,08 
For the most part when I catfish I use circle hooks as well, make sure there sharp...If I'm floating burger a treble hook with a 6 inch bobber, Chicken liver I use a single hook with Barbs to keep the liver on.

For smallies it's the same set up your already using.

For Walleye buy some jigs and just tie them directly to your line. Use minnows or artifials bait.


"If you ain't fishin you ain't living"


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Joined: 06:49pm - Feb 11,03
Posts: 1059
Location: NW Suburbs boat: '93 Sea Nymph

Post Posted: 09:54am - Aug 23,08 
unless you're fishing paste baits or raw hamburger, single hooks are fine for catfish.

I used to use gold crappie hooks all the time for smaller cats, but bigger cats (and carp) can definitely straighten those out. I would either need to wear the fish down more (and loosen drag), or use a sturdier hook.

Eagle claw wide bend or kahle hooks work good in 1/0 size for small cats up to 4/0-5/0 for bigger fish. Tru-turn hooks are another good option, or standard O'Shaughnessy bend hooks.

You can use circle hooks also (get the light wire ones, like Owner MUTU or Daiichi circle chunk lite). If you're new to these, I'd recommend a soft fiberglass rod set-up in a sturdy holder etc. The fish will often hook themselves.


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