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#501825 - 02/09/19 09:37 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 927
Loc: Louisiana
I know a lot of people enjoy the sport of noodling, but I'm not putting myself through that task unless something is ending up in a skillet of hot oil!!
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.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#501829 - 02/09/19 11:35 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
John Fitzgerald Offline


Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 2156
Loc: S. end of Elkins, Arkansas
Flatheads are certainly not on the decline.

They have been introduced to waters where they are not native, have flourished there, and have even been declared an "invasive species" in some parts.
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#501830 - 02/10/19 12:48 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: John Fitzgerald]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
so you think there are just as many flatheads as there are blues in most places that house both naturally

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#501846 - 02/10/19 04:50 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 927
Loc: Louisiana
I'll just say, I've never found Flatheads in big numbers anywhere. Even when limb lining in backwater bayous with live bait, I've always caught more BC/CC than Flatheads. I dont know why, but their niche in the ecosystem has never required large numbers, which is probably a good thing. If their numbers were as high as CC/BC, there wouldn't be anything else to fish for. A 10# spot will eat anything up to 5#.
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.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#501848 - 02/10/19 06:46 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
John Fitzgerald Offline


Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 2156
Loc: S. end of Elkins, Arkansas
Flathead numbers are good, but not as good as blue catfish, because flatheads occupy a niche habitat in cover. Blues are more open water foragers.
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#501850 - 02/10/19 08:29 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: Mike Whatley]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
yeah there is now ay there are as many flats as blues n channels or wede catch more sucks though i wana eat them bad but your lucky t catch just one sadly frown i hear bluecats r the worst tasting of the 3 so looks like im gonna target 1-3 pound channels n flatheads

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#501889 - 02/11/19 10:22 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
just got done cleaning and cooking my catch today man i butchered the hellll out of the fillets i was so mad lol when u fillet one side flip the fillet over to then fillet the skin off i just couldnt get it to work ended up losing a lot of meat sadly but still got a good solid meal i set out 6 cane poles n caught a pregnant 4 pound channel cat im sad that i had t kill a pregnant channel cause she could have stocked the creek


didnt have any good bait had t use crappie sided minnows sadly so ended up only catching the 1 catfish and 2 small spotted bass that i cut up n froze for my next trip man filleting is harder than n the vids lol

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#501890 - 02/12/19 12:04 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
https://imgur.com/a/fGI7P1n


heres the before pic


https://imgur.com/a/NOt86fw

after those were the fillets man wish i could somehow practice without ruining my fish lol she had 2 big crawfish in her stomach that she swallowed whole

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#501901 - 02/12/19 09:58 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
Augie Online   content


Registered: 10/29/18
Posts: 86
Loc: Boone County Missouri
Originally Posted By: mattmonster1991
i just couldnt get it to work ended up losing a lot of meat sadly


Try a Townsend Fish Skinner. Lots of how to use videos on youtube and cheap to buy on ebay.

https://www.ebay.com/b/Townsend-Fish-Scalers-Skinners/179991/bn_84955278

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#501910 - 02/12/19 01:25 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: Augie]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
huh hope it works alot better than the old school fish skinners or needle nose flyers

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#501918 - 02/12/19 04:35 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 927
Loc: Louisiana
Get you a good pair of skinning pliers and skin them before you try to fillet the flesh off the bone. Catfish dont fillet like scaled fish....believe me.

Cut the skin just behind the eyes, across the head and around to under the gill plate. Catch the skin at the cut and pull down to the tail. There will be a small V of skin left on the belly that you'll need to strip back up to the head.

A large heavy hook works really good to hang them on, stuck thru the bottom lip. We had a 2x6 mounted to a tree with 2 hooks on it, one on each end so we could double up on cleaning for market. We didn't fillet many, because we wanted the extra weight, but if someone asked specifically for fillets, the price went up.
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#501922 - 02/12/19 06:43 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: Mike Whatley]
Pat Williamson Offline


Registered: 08/08/14
Posts: 2689
Loc: Oakwood,Texas
Wish I could show yall how to filet all fish . Im not real fast anymore but I get most of the meat and no bones. I dont skin catfish cause it leaves the sinew on the filet and if you fry it it curls up , plus leaves the blood line in

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#501923 - 02/12/19 07:39 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
Bill D. Offline


Registered: 10/19/14
Posts: 5843
Loc: Boone County Illinois
+1 to what Pat said. I will skin smaller ones and cook on the bone. We call them fiddlers. Once they get much size that sinew membrane and blood line pretty much ruins the taste. There should be nothing but white meat left on the fillets. I cut off sinew, blood line and yellow meat.

I also agree that filleting the skin off a cat is a PITA. I almost always cut thru the skin. Thankfully, my bride is good at it! smile


Edited by Bill D. (02/12/19 07:46 PM)
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#501925 - 02/12/19 09:02 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: Bill D.]
Pat Williamson Offline


Registered: 08/08/14
Posts: 2689
Loc: Oakwood,Texas
Bill try starting at the thick end3-4 back cutting towards the thick end, repeat til done. What bloodline is left cut out leaving nice clean fish

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#501928 - 02/12/19 10:51 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
i really loathe having t skin them hope i can get the hang of it without having t do that its strange when i first tried to cut into the fish i couldnt tell when i hit the backbone was hard to fully tell but i got it.

but when you flip the fillet over to fillet the skin the knife cut into the fillet but it wouldnt come off for some reason i got the 14 dollar knife people recommended from walmart maybe i should have tried to get the rapila 50 dollar one

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#501932 - 02/13/19 07:10 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5426
Loc: SE Kansas
When my wife removes the fillet from the skin on CC, unlike where you move the knife along between the flesh and skin on scale type fish, she keeps the knife stationary and pulls the skin toward her moving it back and forth as she pulls. Other than this technique, she fillets them pretty much the same as BG. That is with fish in the 2 to 5# range. We like to harvest the CC at 2-3# ideally, unless she wants to smoke it then the larger fillets work better.

Seems like if you move the knife along rather than pulling the skin through, it is much to easy with a sharp knife to cut through the skin.

She is the CC cleaner. I fillet lots of BG but leave the CC to her.

Have never cleaned a flathead, though we have them here in the larger rivers.


Edited by snrub (02/13/19 07:15 AM)
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#501942 - 02/13/19 10:47 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
smokey Offline


Registered: 06/08/16
Posts: 46
Loc: Douglass, TX
Matt, I have bought the cheap electric knife from Walmart but they never last very long. I bought the Rapila and it works wonderful. It has a lot more power and the only thing I had to do is to replace the blades.

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#502030 - 02/15/19 12:59 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
yeah i caught 5 more yesterday n tried t fillet them again i did a lil better but still i dislike this knife i think fastest best way is for me t skin them then fillet.

i watched a few vids on how t skin them i thought it was much harder than it was so from now on ll do that whats weird is every single catfish i caught had eggs all 6 of them hopefully i dont put a huge dent in the growing population


i not gonna keep anymore for awhile since apparently right now is when the females are pregnant

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#502031 - 02/15/19 01:26 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
John Fitzgerald Offline


Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 2156
Loc: S. end of Elkins, Arkansas
They develop eggs over winter but don't nest until the water warms into the mid 70's consistently.
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#502056 - 02/15/19 09:50 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
do you think that someone can fish a creek/small river out? my local resivour feeds it and it runs into another bigger river was curious if i should watch what i harvest from it? not sure how fishing creeks work i know n lakes u gotta watch certain fish species like bass catfish due t low numbers i usually kill bowfin and gar if i catch them t help the catfish bluegill population

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#502073 - 02/16/19 10:05 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
nehunter Offline


Registered: 07/20/15
Posts: 106
Loc: SE, NE
We have a creek that drys completely up each year and you can catch 15 pound flathead cats in it. I would say as soon as you get a high water event the cats move upstream and repopulate any good hole in the creek.IMO

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#502096 - 02/16/19 06:07 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: nehunter]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
Originally Posted By: nehunter
We have a creek that drys completely up each year and you can catch 15 pound flathead cats in it. I would say as soon as you get a high water event the cats move upstream and repopulate any good hole in the creek.IMO



thats gotta be awesome yeah this never drys up there are parts of it that dry up but im at the deepest widest part i searched the whole map and found the widest part luckly its a great spot but i have to walk down a railroad track half a mile to get to it but its worth it carrying fishout half a mile and 5 rods though by yourself isnt very fun lol

i havnt caught a flatty yet cause iv only used cut spotted bass so far but im gonna try some crayfish and see if they will bite

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#502137 - 02/18/19 05:37 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 927
Loc: Louisiana
You do know using gamefish as bait is frowned upon by the local authorities, dont you? Some states even protect BG from using them as bait. Check your local regs. Hate to see you get a ticket for fishing illegally.
_________________________
.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!

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#502171 - 02/18/19 09:57 PM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: mattmonster1991]
mattmonster1991 Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 148
Loc: Orlando Fl
i doubt theyd care on this i now get my bait from a lake i posted in another thread i made called oxbowlakes its from water run off from a park in the city

the lakes about 300 acres and has a trial all the way around it and somehow formed an oxbow lake on the right and its full of super stunted warmouth and bullheads when i say stunted i mean they hardly have a belly its sunk in and around 3 inches long lol i started to throw dog food ect into the water to help but realized only bullheads will eat it as warmouth like fish and worms

anyways yeah these fish r quite misrible ill show you a pic of the oxbow

https://imgur.com/a/dR5Dsn4


its a bit of a walk but can usually catch a fish every 15 seconds but y god they are some tiny ones i went the otherday to check it out 10 years ago i went to fish it randomly ad i caught some good sized bulls and warmouths 0 bluegill but now iv only caught tiny ones even to small to hit my size 8 cricket hooks i wonder if they died out or what

i guess the reason theres no bluegill n crappie is due to the bad water and that bullheads n warmouth can live in harsh condiitons

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#502178 - 02/19/19 03:09 AM Re: flathead catfish declining? [Re: smokey]
Jack McConnick Offline


Registered: 02/18/19
Posts: 2
Loc: New Jersey
Originally Posted By: smokey
Matt, I have bought the cheap electric knife from Walmart but they never last very long. I bought the Rapila and it works wonderful. It has a lot more power and the only thing I had to do is to replace the blades.


+1 for the Rapala Fish N Fillet Knife. I bought it to take fishing didn't want to spend a fortune this fits my needs. The sheath is awesome.


Edited by Jack McConnick (02/20/19 06:46 AM)
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