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Can You Top These Catfish Fishing Records?

Aug 17, 2007
Catfish fishing records in the United States are recognized and recorded by the International Game Fish Association (IGFA), which keeps track of records for all manner of saltwater and freshwater fish. While breaking a record for the largest fish caught is always exciting, the variations in typical size between species makes some catfish fishing records seem much more impressive than others.

For example, channel cats are not the largest species of catfish available, though they may very well be the most plentiful since they are the least picky about habitat preference. They can be found throughout the entire country in just about any type of body of water at almost any temperature and time of year. For a fish that rarely reaches a weight greater than five or six pounds, it's no wonder that the world record set in 1964 of 58 pounds has yet to be broken.

Where was this amazing specimen caught? The Santee-Cooper Reservoir in South Carolina was home to this monster of a channel cat, and while anglers visiting this popular fishing hole aren't likely to rival that record any time soon, the reservoir does continue to produce large sized channel cats in excellent numbers.

Flathead catfish are a much larger breed, so catfish fishing records for these giants sound much more significant. Note that these fish are predators rather than absolute opportunists when it comes to feeding, and anglers have to use large, fresh bait to attract them.

Flatheads are easily 30 pounds on a regular basis and will put up a fight, so fishermen aiming for these trophies are especially bold. This makes the 91.25-pound record flathead caught in 1982 in Lake Lewisville, Texas an even more impressive catch. However, the record has since been broken by an unbelievable catch at Elk City Reservoir in Kansas.

Believe it or not, in 1998, a 123-pound flathead was pulled from the reservoir, blowing the old record out of the water (no pun intended).

The most recent catfish fishing record breaker, however, was a blue catfish. Probably the largest species in the United States and all of North America, these babies are regularly found at weights of over 90 pounds.

Everyone thought that the record set in 2004 at Lake Texoma, Texas with the 121-pound blue catfish catch would remain unbroken for at least several years. This was proved wrong, however, with the grand old Mississippi River near Alton, Illinois yielding a 124-pound blue cat in May of 2005.

To give you an idea of the true size of this beast, it was just short of five feet in length (58 inches) and 44 inches around (nearly four feet).
About the Author
Dan Eggertsen is a fishing researcher and enthusiast who is commited to providing the best catfish fishing information possible. Get more information on catfish fishing records here: http://www.askcatfishfishing.com
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