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#233028 08/31/10 08:57 PM
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Im rather new to catfish and was wondering, whats the best way to kill one? Last night I was fishing at a local river and caught a 15 CC. I kept it in a fish basket till I was ready to leave. I decided to bash it in the head (the way I do most of my fish) and hit it repeatedly with a small metal rod holder until it stopped moving no gill movements or anything. Then I stuck it in a plastic bag and drove home, about 30 mins. To my surprise when I got it in the house and was ready to fillet it, there it was looking at me and trying to breathe. In frustration I slit its gills and that finished him off. But seriously, there has got to be an easier way to kill a cat than massive blunt force trauma, suffocation and finally stabbing I felt like a gangster.

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blunt force to the head is the best method I know of. You want to clean them right after the knock. Like most fish, the knock merely stuns them. Catfish just have the ability to live longer out of the water than most species.



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With larger ones, you can do it the humane way, and nail them to a tree thru the head.


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Yes, it can be kind of traumatic.

Having been a catfish fisherman for a very long time, I have my usual ritual.

I generally knock the poor critter on the head with a blackjack I made about 50 years ago -- the handle from a broken baseball bat, with a 5-lb. plumbing lead (probably no longer available) molded around the end, and held in place with a couple of screws. Nearly the entire thing is wrapped in friction tape (something else that is probably no longer available). I originally made it for big northern pike and muskellunge when I was a pre-teen.

Sometimes I will quickly fillet, but mostly I will chop the tail off of a catfish with a hatchet. Then I hang the fish for at least 30 minutes. A lot of blood will run out. Then it is ready for quick filleting and skinning.

A less brutal method is to find a pan or tub big enough for the fish. Put the fish in the bottom, then add several inches of ice over the fish. The fish will die a very peaceful death within about 30 minutes.

I fillet and skin my catfish just like I would fillet and skin a bluegill, bass, striped bass, etc.

I end up with a left and right fillet, and a belly. I skin both sides of the belly. We serve it as "West Virginia Lobster" fingers. It is kind of chewy, but very tasty. With the skin and belly lining removed, it is very mild and firm. Cut it into finger size pieces. Steam it. Dip in butter. Enjoy with fresh corn on the cob. Or, dip in butter, and serve on a potato roll smeared with a little mayonnaise and paprika.

Good eatin'
Ken


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I hope to feel like a gangster tomorrow and ring the necks of some dove!

Ken, how's that taste with Miracle Whip instead of Mayonnaise?

I swear GSF and mayonnaise must be related...they are both about as nasty as nasty can get! grin



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Originally Posted By: Rtifs
Im rather new to catfish and was wondering, whats the best way to kill one? Last night I was fishing at a local river and caught a 15 CC. I kept it in a fish basket till I was ready to leave. I decided to bash it in the head (the way I do most of my fish) and hit it repeatedly with a small metal rod holder until it stopped moving no gill movements or anything. Then I stuck it in a plastic bag and drove home, about 30 mins. To my surprise when I got it in the house and was ready to fillet it, there it was looking at me and trying to breathe. In frustration I slit its gills and that finished him off. But seriously, there has got to be an easier way to kill a cat than massive blunt force trauma, suffocation and finally stabbing I felt like a gangster.

I'm thinking way back so don't hold me to details, but I remember how the old catfishermen did it ...

Between and slightly above the eyes of the fish is a vertical soft area - slit skin vertically and run a hevy straw upward into the soft area - the catfish will quiver and die immediately.

Try it and see if my memory has failed.



N.E. Texas 2 acre and 1/4 acre ponds
Original george #173 (22 June 2002)




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Originally Posted By: george1

Between and slightly above the eyes of the fish is a vertical soft area - slit skin vertically and run a hevy straw upward into the soft area - the catfish will quiver and die immediately.
Try it and see if my memory has failed.


This is essentially what my dad taught me. We used a little ice pick-like tool to do it...



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Depending on the size of the fish I usually put all fish I catch in a nice ICE bath for the ride home or as soon as I get there. This seems to be the easiest way and for me they clean easier as well.

Now the big cats like Flathead we always hung them on a tree like CATMANDOO had mentioned and let them bleed out as it removed most of the red in the meat. Now youre ready to butcher the beast.

If you happen to be in a boat with a livewell and you have a knife (electric works the best) with you, you can slit the gills and let them bleed out that way. This works nicely and you can them clean them on site as well. (or once again throw on ice to keep them fresh until you get home)

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I have tried the poke between the eyes method and sometimes I hit the mark but most times I don't. When I hit it, they quiver a little bit and that's it.

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Is there something wrong with just throwing them on ice after you catch them? Unless they've got nasty teeth and may bite me later, I generally don't worry about dispatching fish.

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I tend to just throw on ice as well. Seems to slow them down and keep the meat fresh. And it's humane enough for me to feel ok with it. laugh

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Originally Posted By: catmandoo
I generally knock the poor critter on the head with a blackjack I made about 50 years ago -- the handle from a broken baseball bat, with a 5-lb. plumbing lead (probably no longer available) molded around the end, and held in place with a couple of screws. Nearly the entire thing is wrapped in friction tape (something else that is probably no longer available).


And the whole assembly is probably illegal, so don't get caught toting it around in your truck because my fees are really high in criminal defense cases when I have to travel that far! grin


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I just hang them on a hook from a tree, cut their tails off, let them bleed out and then skin and fillet them. The whole process is really pretty quick.

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I guess I'll try bringing ice with me. I like the idea of using straw to destroy its brain, so I'll keep that in mind as well.

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Retracted post.

Last edited by Gflo; 09/06/10 09:34 PM. Reason: Not Completely Safe.

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