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Channel Catfish0 locationsFish
Have a photo? - upload then label! .: skatchkins :.
Jun 14 2013
Tonto Creek
TypeFish
FamilyIctaluridae - Bullhead Catfish
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Ictalurus punctatus

North America's most numerous catfish species. It is the official fish of Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, and Tennessee, and is informally referred to as a "channel cat". In the United States, they are the most fished catfish species with approximately 8 million anglers targeting them per year.

They thrive in small and large rivers, reservoirs, natural lakes, and ponds. Channel "cats" are cavity nesters, meaning they lay their eggs in crevices, hollows, or debris, to protect them from swift currents.

Channel catfish possess very keen senses of smell and taste. At the pits of their nostrils (nares) are very sensitive odor sensing organs with a very high concentration of olfactory receptors. In channel catfish, these organs are sensitive enough to detect several amino acids at about one part per 100 million in water. In addition, the channel catfish has taste buds distributed over the surface of its entire body. These buds are especially concentrated on the fish's four pair of barbels (whiskers) surrounding the mouth — about 25 buds per square millimeter. This combination of exceptional senses of taste and smell allows the channel catfish to find food in dark, stained, or muddy water with relative ease.

A member of the Ictalurus genus of American catfishes, channel catfish have a top-end size of about 40–50 pounds (18–23 kg). The world record channel catfish weighed 58 pounds, and was taken from the Santee-Cooper Reservoir in South Carolina, on July 7, 1964. Realistically, a channel catfish over 20 lb (9 kg) is a spectacular specimen, and most catfish anglers view a 10-lb (4.5-kg) fish as a very admirable catch. Furthermore, the average size channel catfish an angler could expect to find in most waterways would be between two and four pounds.

Channel catfish are omnivores, and can be caught using a variety of natural and prepared baits, including crickets, night crawlers, minnows, shad, crawfish, frogs, bullheads, sunfish, and suckers and have even been known to be caught by hand.. :-)

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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