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I'm almost embarassed to ask this considering I fish alot but rarely if ever for catfish.What is the proper way to handle a catfish without getting stung?If anyone would know a link or something that could point that out i'd greatly appreciate it. :oops:
 

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1. Put your thumb behind the front side (pectoral) fin.
2. Put your index finger on the front of the pectoral fin on the other side of the fish. Put your second finger behind that same fin.
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This works like a charm. Not sure if these instructions make sense to you, but if they do it will work for you.
 

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Net em, smack em with a big bat, and put him back. Seems to be a popular tactic with bull heads, so what the heck, it must work on other cats too!!! :lol: :oops: :lol:
 

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I just am starting to fish for catfish this summer and I was wondering if you could just wear rubber gloves? would that work? I am 14 and i am gonna be fishing in grand forks at the dam or a spot about 2 miles from my house where the english coulee diversion re-enters the Red. What is my best bet for catchin them? what do u use for a setup? bait? where to fish? thanks
Matt
 

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Now..Now..Now...bats are not a option guys, even for them cutie bullheads, OK.

First off, cats do not sting, nope...they poke ya. And only if they are very young and the pectoral spines are sharp.

Once they get bigger the spines are rounded from wear and seldom jab ya. The Barbels are just sensory organs that act like fingers or appendages of a tong.

They may Lick-ya maybe, but sting-ya..nope.

Smaller cats, under 5 pounds grab them firmly just below and behind the side spikes with one hand, and the other hand grab the tail. You can slip that hand up to the spikes like a spincast reel in your hand and they will just sit there calmly.

Now Sumo Kitty's is another deal. You should support the head and stomach with one hand while firmly holding the tail with the other. If you do not support them bellies they will think they can still swim away. If they think that you will get slapped WHACK up-side the skull with a Sumo Tail.

Man I love seeing that Kitty Slap! I laugh my *** off every time I see it too...Eh! :lol:

Many a client/fishing friend has not seen the reason to listen to how to correctly hold a big Sumo Kitty.

That's until they get a big wet Kitty Slap up-side the head, then they listen OK after that.........mostly. :D

Remember guys and galls. Just because the fish you think is undesirable bites your offering, to others it may still be the fish of a lifetime. So be respectfully of all fish, whatever they may be. Swatting home runs with Carp or Bullheads will not effect the population to any degree, and it just may get you a big fine for the effort.
 

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I just put my thumb in thier mouth and lift them out of the water. Their mouth feels like rough sand paper. Makes it easer to get the hook out.
 

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I have found that the "thumb behind pectoral fin-index and middle on each side of the dorsal fine" works great. They can thrash about a lot and you can still hold on. You need to move in quick so you don't get jabbed. If you do your hand can get numb for quite a while. When the fish get large (7 pounds or around there) it gets harder to hold them that way.

As for baits, I have found that crawlers and leeches tend to catch smaller cats, but you get many bites. If you want you can rig up another rod with frogs (in the summer obviously). I have had good luck catching larger cats with frogs. Plus you can catch them for free while you fish. Bring a cooler of ice and toss the frogs in. It slows them down enough to get them hooked. As soon as they hit the water they are moving again. I usually get my rods out, then go catch frogs for a while and stock up for the afternoon. (Be sure to keep one eye on your rods, or you may be swimming for them!)
 

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Decoyer...Your handling techniques bring tears to my eyes and almost hurt me as much as the fish. I have grown fond of cats for there sporting like fight, especially the 50 pound flats. When I hold the 30 pound channels I grab the tail and hold under the belly. This gives a great picture shot. Now the big 50 pounders I hold by the gills. Its like doing an arm curl. You will only be poked once to find the "right" way to hold a cat. But please, please, Catfish are one mans prize, so dont bat em :wink:

Thats my preach for the year... :D
 

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I take a hand towel whenever I handle cats, and I handle them the same way duxnbux described. I use the towel just in case the pectoral fins get me when the fish is flopping around and feeling aggressive once I land it. I remember seeing my grandpa's hands when messing with them and getting them off the hook, they would be bloodied around the thumb and between the thumb and index finger. He was careful but sometimes cats don't want to settle down once you land them.
 

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I just put the fins between my fingers on the smaller fish and apply some pressure. The smaller they are the better the chance of getting a fin in the finger or hand. I took my little boy on Sunday and we landed 11 channel cats between 2 and 5 lbs. He just turned three and he got to reel in all of the fish. The last three, I handed him the pole as soon as I hooked them and did not help again until he put them on the bank. He is ready to go again. Shad sides worked ok, but shad guts were the ticket. I was not expecting to do that good with the water temp in the high 30's.
 

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I usually use nightcrawlers when I'm fishing for cats. Chicken livers work good too, also try dipping the nightcrawlers in the liver, works like a charm. I found out last year that white bass love that trick.
 

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Yeah its all good, just the boogers like to fight just as much on land as much as they do when they're in the water, only difference is that they're a little tired out by the time they do get up on land.
 

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I was hit by one of those stickers,when I was 12 years old,it numbed my hand and arm for three days.....................Bad way to learn..........
 

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First of all, don't kill the rough fish and throw them back in the water. they are just going to end up along the shore stinkin, not to mention that it is illeagle and doesn't do anything to reduce the population.
Be carefull with the bullheads. Their spines are small and very sharp and have something on them that causes extreme pain if you get stuck. For those guys I use a pair of plyers to grab their lower lip.
 
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