Channel catfish

The channel cat usually has a color between brown and grey and usually has small, dark spots on its body. Like the blue catfish, its tail is forked. Unlike the blue cat, its anal fin is curved and not straight.

Channel Catfish like the lake life, but are also at home in larger rivers and ponds.

Channel Catfish have a strong sense of smell and taste, but it doesn’t bother them too much – they’ll eat just about anything! 

All of the major catfish species spawn during spring or summer when the water warms to an optimal temperature. Channel spawn at 70 to 84 degrees, but 80 to 81 degrees is considered best. 

  • Weiss Lake: Limit consumption of catfish to 1 meal/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Logan Martin: Limit consumption of catfish to 1 meal/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Lay Lake: Limit consumption of catfish to 2 meals/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Choccolocco Creek: It is advised to NOT eat any fish caught from Choccolocco Creek due to PCB & Mercury contamination.  
Channel Catfish by Glenn Strickland

(Ictalurus punctatus)

The channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) is the most commonly caught and eaten catfish in the Coosa River.  

The blue catfish

The blue cat is a pale blue color. Their anal fin is straight, not curved, and if you really feel like counting, has 30+ rays compared to the channel cat which has less than 30 rays. Their tail is forked like a channel cat, but usually more deeply.

Blue catfish like large waterbodies, even better if they are clear with moving water.

They love to feed below the dams on the Coosa’s and scoop up whatever smells good that day.

All of the major catfish species spawn during spring or summer when the water warms to an optimal temperature. Blue spawn at 70 to 84 degrees, but 80 to 81 degrees is considered best. 

  • Weiss Lake: Limit consumption of catfish to 1 meal/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Logan Martin: Limit consumption of catfish to 1 meal/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Lay Lake: Limit consumption of catfish to 2 meals/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Choccolocco Creek: It is advised to NOT eat any fish caught from Choccolocco Creek due to PCB & Mercury contamination.
  •  

 (Ictalurus furcatus)

The blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus) is similar to the channel cat, but can grow larger.

flathead catfish

Their head is, not surprisingly, quite flat – it almost looks like the backside of a shovel! Their color is a mess of browns, yellows, blacks and whites- very mottled. Their anal fin is short like a channel cat and rounded. Their tail is not forked like blues and channel cats.

Flathead’s like large waterbodies, even better if they are clear with moving water.

They love to feed below the dams on the Coosa’s and scoop up whatever smells good that day.

Flatheads spawn at 66 to 75 degrees.

  • Weiss Lake: Limit consumption of catfish to 1 meal/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Logan Martin: Limit consumption of catfish to 1 meal/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Lay Lake: Limit consumption of catfish to 2 meals/ month due to PCB’s. 
  • Choccolocco Creek: It is advised to NOT eat any fish caught from Choccolocco Creek due to PCB & Mercury contamination.
  •  

(Pylodictis olivaris)

The flathead catfish (Pylodictis olivaris) is quite distinct from a blue or channel cat. They live their life generally in the same types of places and feeding on the same things as blues and channel cats. 

Share this: