Posted on 2/2/14

catfish 1 300WESTERN KY (5/24/13) – When water temperatures warm into the 70s, it's catfish time across Kentucky.
"Late May and June is the prime time for catching catfish from reservoirs, small lakes, rivers and farm ponds," said Gerry Buynak, assistant director of fisheries at the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. "The spawn is underway and with the onset of warmer weather, catfish settle into daily patterns. They begin to feed aggressively at dawn and dusk and throughout the night."
The top three catfish species sought by anglers in Kentucky include the channel catfish, the blue catfish and the flathead catfish:
The channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) is the most widely distributed catfish species in Kentucky. It thrives in ponds and small lakes. It has a bluish-silver back, white belly and silvery sides with small, irregular dark spots. Adults are commonly 12 to 20 inches long.
catfish2 300"Each year almost 200,000 channel catfish are stocked in Kentucky waters," said Buynak. "At the end of May, we'll be putting channel catfish in 27 of our FINs (Fishing in Neighborhoods) lakes."
To catch channel catfish, an angler must fish on the bottom. That's because channel catfish are scavengers, using their super-sensitive whiskers to detect the odors of food on the bottom.
Use the basic slip sinker rig - a No. 2 hook, leader, barrel swivel and egg sinker - for bottom fishing. Night crawlers, shrimp, chicken liver or scented dough are excellent channel catfish baits.
The blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus) thrives in big rivers such as the lower Ohio and Mississippi rivers, as well as their major tributaries. Blue catfish are also found in Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake. In the last decade blue catfish have been successfully established in several small lakes and four major reservoirs -- Taylorsville Lake, Barren River Lake, Dewey Lake and Fishtrap Lake.
The blue catfish is similar in appearance to the channel catfish. The most obvious difference is that the blue catfish has a straight anal fin. The blue catfish is bluish-gray with silvery sides and a white belly. The tail is deeply forked.
To target blue catfish in small lakes, use a bobber to keep the bait suspended about 6-8 feet below the surface. The best bait for blue catfish is cut bait, such as the viscera and gills of gizzard shad, chunks of bluegill, or pieces of minnow.
The flathead catfish (Pylodictis olivaris) is primarily found in large rivers and reservoirs.
It is brown to reddish-brown to yellowish with dark blotches on the top and sides, with a yellowish to white belly. It has a wide, flat head, a triangular-shaped tail and a protruding lower jaw.
Flatheads commonly reach 36 inches and can live for 20 years. Adults are solitary and inhabit deep, sluggish pools during the day. They move into rocky shallows at night, often locating around cover. They eat live fish such as creek chubs, shiners, shad and sunfish.
Anglers should use a slip sinker rig with a small foam float attached to the leader. Hook the baitfish through the tail to keep it from snagging on the bottom.
Catfish in Kentucky are big, abundant and found throughout the state. Now is time to start fishing for them.

catfish3 300

WK Outdoors
Information provided by Seth Stewart (Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife)
Visit the WK Outdoors website at your social media marketing partner

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Most Read This Week

November 20, 2015 9594

Dispatchers Overhear Drug Activity during…

by SurfKY News
November 24, 2015 9324

Distillery to Operate in Old Graham School…

by SurfKY News
November 21, 2015 8561

Injuries Result from Beulah Road Accident

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
November 23, 2015 7299

Relative Charged with Murder, Arson in Deaths of…

by SurfKY News
November 24, 2015 4139

Ohio County Most Wanted - Top 10 - November 24

by SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

November 17, 2015 14890

Ohio County Most Wanted - Top 10 - November 17

by SurfKY News
November 18, 2015 14249

Runaway Teen Returns on His Own

by SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

November 25, 2015 1491

Hopkins County Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted -…

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 1044

Man Hospitalized after Early Morning Car Accident

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 916

Students Serve to Learn Life Lesson

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 750

Madisonville Police Reports Released

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 733

Two Vehicle Collision Sends Four to Area Hospitals

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 654

Hopkins County Sheriff's Reports Released

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 628

A.G. Conway Announces $256 Million Settlement…

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 562

Thanksgiving is Peak Day for Cooking Fires

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 439

Ky. Division of Forestry Firefighters on Standby…

by SurfKY News
November 25, 2015 398

Members of Congress Need to Spend More Time on…

by SurfKY News