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Does anyone catch catfish regularly on hard lures?

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I'm wondering if anyone catches catfish on a regular basis on hard lures? 

I've caught a few catfish when bass fishing.  They've been on lipless baits and chatterbaits.  These lures have no odor/scent so it must be the vibrations that attract the catfish? (I don't know much about catfish)

 

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I do, mostly in the early fall & early spring.  I made a thread about it last week.  Very few are under 5 lbs, it is mostly the big predator catfish that are shark like and attack anything (I saw one attack & eat a coot once).

As far as what I catch them on, I went back through my log for the past 3 years & here is what those over 7 lbs bit on:

  • BPS Speed shad swimbait (9)
  • ZMan TRD Ned rig (7)
  • Crankbaits (6)
  • Various plastic worms (5)
  • Jerkbaits (4)
  • Senko (1)
  • Jig (1)
  • Chatterbait (1)

I use scent (Fishstiks Crawdad or Shad) on my soft baits, but since I have only caught one on the slower moving senko, I don't believe it is smell that is attracting them.  Like sharks, they may get drawn to an area by scent, but they attack movement.

 

 

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I've caught catfish on just about everything.  Crankbaits seem to catch the most for some reason, probably because the catfish hone in on the vibrations like you were thinking.

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I caught a 31" channel cat on a crankbait earlier this year! That was a fun fight! I actually caught a catfish on a popper last year too! That was about the last thing I expected to catch on a topwater lure! 

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Funny that you say that !! One time while bass fishing (I was on the shore ) I had 2 channel cats come in real shallow and they were Working over the area real good.. I don't know much about their behavior but I do know they were ultra aggressive at this moment. I grabbed my jar of powerbait and caught a small bluegill (tips I gathered rom soflabasser, bluebasser86,and gordo in another thread I started called channel catfish strategy) and I rigged it up on my top water rod. I tried casting it out and reeling it in slowly but it got no action. So I sliced it and let it sit on the bottom where I saw it last.. and went back to bass fishing. About 10 minutes later I seen my line tighten and I missed the fish. So I put a bobber on, and right after I recast the catfish came up and nailed the bobber in about 8-10FOW. Blew my mind because I've always been told they were bottom feeders... I've never caught one top water but that experience alone tells me it can be done ! 

 

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4 hours ago, Smjunior25 said:

I caught a 31" channel cat on a crankbait earlier this year! That was a fun fight! I actually caught a catfish on a popper last year too! That was about the last thing I expected to catch on a topwater lure! 

Wow, that must have been a fun surprise.

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I fish one lake where they will hit any bait you use for bass. Swimbait, drop shot, blade bait, lipless, deep diving crank, etc etc.

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I used to occasionally target flatheads with deep diving crankbaits by fishing them very slowly through riprap on dams. I've caught catfish on every kind of bait I've fished and it's not at all surprising anymore. I caught my PB flathead this spring on a finesse jig and I catch dozens and dozens of channel cats on bladed jigs every year. I always catch some on jerkbaits and all variations of hard cranks, and even topwater. I've caught several cats on poppers, lots of them on buzzbaits, and even a couple on hollow bodied frogs through grass mats, which are almost scary, aggressive strikes. 

Catfish are extremely sensitive to vibrations. Their poor eyesight is basically a non-factor because they're so good at finding prey in the turbid conditions they so often reside in by following vibrations and their sense of smell (catfish's bodies are covered with taste buds, so when you grab one, they're tasting you). 

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Not a lot for me and not on hard lure either.

I caught two on chatter bait, one on dropshot zman trd and another one on marabou jig while fishing for crappie. It was fun fighting with 5lbs catfish with light spinning rod.

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