Ictalurus punctatus is the scientific name of the channel catfish
It is the official fish of Tennessee, Missouri, and Iowa.
The channel catfish is native to the Nearctic, and it is distributed well in the eastern and northern part of the United States and in Lower Canada. They are also found in the north part of Mexico. The channel catfish are also found in some landlocked parts of Europe.
Types of fish that can be found
The barbels are the whisker-like sensory organs. The channel catfish comes in many colors, and this is dependent on the environment. The common catfish colors are bluish-gray, olive, and light blue.
The male channel catfish turns dark in the spawning season. The female catfish needs cold water and short days in the winter months for her proper egg development. The channel catfish is the most populated catfish species. The channel catfish has a keen sense of smell, and their nostril pit is sanative to the odor sending organs. Their olfactory receptors also have a high concentration.
Type of fishing that can be done at the location
The channel catfish is fished throughout the US by the anglers, and they are used for recreational fishing. It is a recreational fish and is managed by the state fishing regulation. The channel catfish if gets introduced to the non-native waters can impact the other fish species because they are opportunistic. They may even attack the native fishes and wipe them put. Since the channel catfish is omnivorous, the anglers use a variety of baits to catch it. They use minnows, nightcrawlers, cricket, and shad to catch the catfish. Catfish are also known to take ivory soap and raw steak as bait.
The popular methods that anglers use to catch the catfish are juglines, lib lines, trotlines, and bank lines. It is in addition to the rod and reel fishing methods. The other techniques that the anglers use are the slat traps and angled entrance. The typical bait that is used for this trap is dog food and stink bait. The fishermen should be cautious of the sharp spines of the dorsal and pectoral fins of the channel catfish when they are removing the hook from the catfish.
The channel catfish lives up to the age of 24 years. The maximum weight reported was 26.3 kgs. The length of the catfish is approximately 57 cms or 22 inches, and the maximum reported range of the channel catfish is 132 cms or 52 inches.
The range of the channel catfish is from northern Mexico to southern Canada. It is found in the central drainage of the United States.
The adults live in streams and rivers. They prefer to live in water that is clean and well oxygenated. The channel catfish can also live in reservoirs and ponds. They live in small and large rivers, ponds, natural lakes, and reservoirs. They are cavity nesters which mean that they lay their eggs in hollows, crevices or in debris and this protects their eggs form the swift water currents. In Canada, the catfish is found mostly in the great lakes watershed.
The diet of the channel catfish is mostly crustaceans, small fish, aquatic insects, snail, and small mammals. It is also reported that the channel catfish eats little birds.
Water Type: Freshwater