Saltwater catfish – Much like their freshwater cousins, are members of the order of Siluriformes and are notable for the barrels on their mouths that are shaped like the whiskers of a cat.
Most saltwater catfish have white underbellies and a bluish gray top skin. They weigh around one to three or more pounds and are found in many states of the US as well as other countries, usually in inland or offshore water.
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Is the Saltwater Catfish Challenging Enough?
Most anglers ponder on the issue whether the saltwater catfish is a useful or a useless fish. They are quite easy to catch, whether on purpose or accidentally. They also are omnivorous, and would pounce on any bait offered, even artificial ones.
They also have a reputation for having sharp spines as many people who had previously dealt with them have also had a fair share with the sharp spines on its fins. A small prick can be quite painful and it sometimes causes swelling, pain and serious discomfort.
Is the Saltwater Catfish Edible?
People also often argue if these fishes are edible, and while a few people say that they are not, there are also people who claim that they are edible, or they taste just like freshwater catfish or better.
How to Catch Them
If you want to catch a saltwater catfish, you can try out several catfishing techniques and methods namely: still fishing, draft fishing and bottom fishing.
Be sure to bring an ample amount of bait, either live or dead, and a sturdy fishing gear. they also feed using their sense of smell and taste, so using various baits such as shrimps and crawfish is also a good choice.
Stink baits like chicken liver are also excellent for luring out the catfish. Make sure that you place the bait firmly on the hook so it does not easily slip out. Circle hooks are also recommended for use since they hold the fish more securely than other types of hooks.
Saltwater catfish have tough and slimy bodies so try to be careful when unhooking them. The hardhead catfish for instance, has a mucous layer which covers its large dorsal spine. This layer is mildly toxic, so it would be better to unhook the fish using safety aids like gloves and pliers.
These fishes also tend to try their hardest to break off the hook, and their strong bodies usually let them succeed, so make sure that the fish is nicely gripped on the bait before you reel it in.
I know that many anglers emphasize on the fact that catching these fish isn’t challenging enough for them, but if you’re just starting out, then the saltwater catfish will definitely be a good start for you.