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#11530937 - 04/09/16 08:09 AM Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out?
plasma800 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 367
Loc: Montgomery Texas
In my neighborhood we have two private lakes. Modest sized I think one is 30 acres, and the other a little smaller.

I've been fishing them the last few weeks for bass. The one lake is shallow.... like to 6 feet at it's deepest with areas in the middle that can get so shallow my little pond boat can get stuck.

I've been watching these fins come out of the water. A side fin, like a fish rolling on it's side and mulling about in the water.

So day before yesterday I was ripping a top water plug near the bank and something struck at it, and literally pulled like an 18 wheeler.... after a little struggle, my lure slammed me straight in the face (thank god I was wearing glasses)

Anyway, the hooks on the topwater lure had scales on them, so I figure I had foul hooked SOMETHING, buddy thought it was a grinnel... maybe so. Right in that area, I had seen the same fins I speak of rolling in the shallow grass, and bunches of them.

So yesterday I decided to find out. I loaded up with some frozen shrimp and headed out.

In a very shallow area in the middle, I saw the fins, the rolling, and I could SEE a monster just right under the surface in probably a foot of water. I literally lowered my treble hook and shrimp right on the fishes head and hook up was IMMEDIATE.

For 5 minutes this thing pulled my 10 foot pond boat around. Once I finally got the fish near me again, I got his head up and it was a MONSTER catfish. I could have fit both fists in his mouth. I reached for my lip grabbers sitting right there, and the line snapped and he was gone. 17lb mono, poof.

So I stayed in the creek channel, and tried to continually sneak up on the "finning" fish, which was happening all over and all around me, but I never did get another hook up.

at first I thought "these must be carp or something"

what's the scoop here? I'm not much of a catfisherman, but after THAT hook up, I am now. I only got a look at this things face for a split second, he was about as big as my leg, and as long. and I'm watching HUNDREDS of these things fin the surface on a lake no body fishes smile lucky me.

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#11531050 - 04/09/16 09:53 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
GetSlimed Offline
Angler

Registered: 01/05/14
Posts: 492
Loc: Flower Mound, TX
Ditch the treble hooks for some circle hooks and maybe upgrade to 20-25lb test. The cats are making their move up shallow for the spawn. Good luck!
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#11531051 - 04/09/16 09:55 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
plasma800 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 367
Loc: Montgomery Texas
ok this makes sense then.... I'm planning a trip to academy now for the proper gear. I thought I was targeting Grinnel, but I do believe the circle hooks are the best for cats. Wonder if my local bait shop sells cut bait...

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#11531074 - 04/09/16 10:08 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
steveiam Online   content
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 6844
Loc: Red Oak, Tx. (North Texas)
Originally Posted By: plasma800
ok this makes sense then.... I'm planning a trip to academy now for the proper gear. I thought I was targeting Grinnel, but I do believe the circle hooks are the best for cats. Wonder if my local bait shop sells cut bait...

I'd rethink the buying of cut bait, just make your own -
Go catch some perch (simplest ) and cut that up, perch heads and fillets make great bait-
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#11531117 - 04/09/16 10:42 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
spazm09 Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/16/09
Posts: 1799
Loc: Dallas, Tx
Only time I see cats "fin" the surface is in very shallow water. And I see more wakes than fins.

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#11531120 - 04/09/16 10:43 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
Muzzlebrake Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 12/26/14
Posts: 1453
Loc: Euless
Oh yeah, catfish do roll up on top. I have seen cats swim on top with the dorsal sticking out of the water several times.
I have seen blues stand on their head in shallow 2' water with their tails sticking out of the water.
After catching one it turns out they were digging up mussels and feasting on them. There were what looked like hundreds of them working the shallow spot in about an acre area. Most of them looked to be larger size fish 15 lb and up.
Get some bigger tackle and go get em. Post some pics too.
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From Genesis: "And God promised men that good and obedient wives would be found in all corners of the earth."

Then He made the earth round...and He laughed and laughed and laughed!

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#11531462 - 04/09/16 05:02 PM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
plasma800 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 367
Loc: Montgomery Texas
im headed out in about 30 minutes with some proper gear.

One things is for sure, this lake is FULL of breem and perch

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#11531619 - 04/09/16 07:09 PM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
mrdvant Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 07/26/15
Posts: 118
They definitely do. If you don't get a good look and aren't sure though, it could also be gar. They like to hit the top also. I'm not an expert, but I fish a river with a lot of big blues and a lot of gar, and so far in my experience the gar seem to hit the top dorsal fin up and the blues seem to flop over and belly up to the surface.

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#11532246 - 04/10/16 09:28 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
plasma800 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 367
Loc: Montgomery Texas
was real windy last night, had a hard time staying put.

Tried the Berkely dip bait, but it stuck to everything except the dip worm.

caught nothing

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#11532357 - 04/10/16 10:45 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
Dan90210 ☮ Online   content
Woman of the year 2015

Registered: 11/18/09
Posts: 25599
Loc: Denton County
Catch the bluegill then cut em up for bait amigo!

That store bought stuff is junk.
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Originally Posted By: junbengreat
Pulled a gun on his dryer and they caught a bunch of fish.

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#11533527 - 04/10/16 09:11 PM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: Dan90210 ☮]
plasma800 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 367
Loc: Montgomery Texas
good idea
Originally Posted By: Dan90210
Catch the bluegill then cut em up for bait amigo!

That store bought stuff is junk.

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#11533768 - 04/10/16 11:09 PM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
Catfish Lynn Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 06/03/10
Posts: 1132
Loc: Bryan, Texas
Sounds like you may have a mixture of fish there. You noted a scale on the lure, so could be a big carp or gar, or even a Buffalo. You noted a catfish about the size of your leg. Did you get a look at the tail? A distinct fork in it indicates a Channel or Blue. If not, then it may be a YellowCat. Did the head look rounded or similar on top? Then it would be a Blue or Channel. If it had a wide head & sort of flat across the top, perhaps looking like a Square point shovel from the back side, then it was a Yellow. Grenalds (Bowfins) are also quite feisty & will put up a heck of a fight. In private ponds or lakes, usually there at least a few big yellows lurking in it. And the Channels tend to get rather large as well. A few years back, our installer had permission to fish in a customer's private pond. He caught a 14 pound Channel, but it was mostly head. Normally a Channel is slimmer but as they get older, they bulk up. But this one bulked up very huge towards its head. I was surprised.
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#11533978 - 04/11/16 08:10 AM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
plasma800 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/13/14
Posts: 367
Loc: Montgomery Texas
hard to say, I wish I had a picture of his head, but from my limited knowledge it was probably a channel cat. Would a blue pick up a piece of a frozen shrimp?

As first I too thought the scales came from a big carp. Later thought it could have been a gar. But then again, I've never heard of a carp striking at a top water popper, but maybe? I have yet to confirm bowfins exist in this lake, but I'd bet money there are a bunch of them in there.

But as I move through the lake, big fish make big wakes scattering out of the way.
.

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#11535260 - 04/11/16 04:37 PM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
Dothead Online   content
Outdoorsman

Registered: 06/06/11
Posts: 52
Loc: Ft. Worth
Are you sure the big scale wasn't just the shell of the shrimp?

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#11535307 - 04/11/16 04:56 PM Re: Do catfish roll on the surface / stick a fin out? [Re: plasma800]
HeavyLead Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/18/14
Posts: 1006
Loc: Rowlett, Texas
I've seen them cruising the top like sharks, but every fish I've seen rolling on top was a gar, carp, or buffalo. I'm sure they do at times though.

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