Choosing the best catfish bait depends on where you are fishing and what type of catfish you are looking to reel in. There are many different types of baits you could use but not all baits are created equal and knowing what type of bait to use can help you become the envy of all your catfishing buddies.
Seasoned catmen have very strong opinions about which bait is the best. You’ll hear one catman say that Threadfish Shad is what they swear by when fishing for Blue Catfish while another will say that they have had their best success using ShipJack Herring.
So what is the best catfish bait to use?
Here’s a little secret… Catfish in general are not that particular about what they eat. Catfish are opportunistic feeders and have a hearty appetite for all sorts of bait weather it’s alive, dead, or you made it yourself at home. The main key to remember is to “match the hatch”. The bait of choice is always going to be their primary food source in the area you are fishing.
With that being said, here are the best catfish bait choices we have found to work wonders for the each of these particular types of catfish:
- Blue Catfish – Shad (A fish in the Herring family). Use fresh wormed onto a hook or cut into pieces.
- Flathead Catfish – Live bait. The key is to make sure you keep your live bait fresh and alive. (Look for what is the primary source in the place you are fishing.)
- Channel Catfish – Prepared baits (Dip, Punch and Soap baits all work well.)
Another key that will help find the best catfish bait to use is to constantly keep an eye on the water where you are fishing. If you happen to see a catfish feeding on something you will want to match that bait and it’s swimming action as closely as you can.
To sum it up, weather you are fishing for Blue, Channel, Flathead or even Yellow Bullhead catfish, the golden rule in choosing the best catfish bait is to always take into consideration the type of catfish, your fishing location and the primary food source that the catfish are feeding on where you are fishing.