John's Journal... Entry 52, Day 4
EDITOR'S NOTE: To consistently catch very big catfish, you must have heavy tackle and the knowledge of where to find and how to catch these monster-sized fish. In many lakes and rivers throughout the United States, catfish weighing more than 50 pounds cruise the bottoms.
Ted Jowett of Winnipeg, Manitoba, who has been a guide on the Red River for many years, said, "Early in the spring, the catfish will spawn below the dam in the shallows where the current is swift. As the season progresses, the fish move downriver to pockets and holes with numerous snags and brush. When the water warms up, the catfish move into the deeper holes in the river and often will be caught only at night. The catfish on the Red River will average from 18 to about 24 pounds.
Jowett has learned that big catfish range widely in the river, moving often. "I've worked with the fisheries department tagging fish in the Red River, and we've seen big catfish move as much as 125 miles. We had one cat that swam 20 miles in one week. To consistently catch these catfish, you must know where to find them when you go after them."
A few years ago, the Red River was a virgin fishery, before commercial fishermen moved onto the river and drastically depleted the numbers of big cats. However, today more restrictions are in place on the numbers and sizes of catfish that can be taken. This fishery at the Red River is now becoming a trophy-catfish region.
To learn more about catching catfish, go to Night Hawk Publications' Home Page, click on books, and then go to fishing books to see John Phillips' "The Masters' Secrets of Catfishing." You can buy the book by sending a check or a money for $13.95 to Night Hawk Publications, 4112 Camp Horner Road, Birmingham, AL 35243, or use a credit card by calling (800) 627-4295.
Tomorrow: Danny Zaidle