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At the end of the day, catfish will eat just about anything so how do you avoid them if that’s not what you’re after?

Here’s what happened during a session at Beausoleil: both these fish were caught during the same week, from the same swim and from the same gravel mark. At the beginning, my tactics were to stick with a boilie only approach, and just fish over a light scattering of 20mm baits. This worked well and produced a number of carp. I wanted a big cat to add to the tally, so I started adding a 5kg dose of pellets to the spot and this big cat decided he couldn’t resist any longer!

carp and cat

Catching a big catfish in a 4-acre lake is an incredible experience but some anglers visiting Beausoleil would prefer not to catch them. If that is the case, one thing to do, if possible, is to come when the catfish activity is at its lowest, and that’s usually April and October. However, if that’s not possible, here are some tactics that have worked to try and avoid them.

How to avoid catfish: 3 tactics to try

► Step 1: Create a distraction. Catfish love big beds of bait, and when they are on the feed, it’s difficult to give them too much. Simply pick an open water gravel mark that is as far from your marginal traps as possible, row out 5-10kg of pellet and let them get on with it. Keep the spot topped up every day to keep them occupied.

► Step 2 – Choose your bait wisely. The Beausoleil boilies that we supply on site are great bait for both carp and cats. So if you really don’t want to catch a catfish, then don’t use it. Instead, use something creamy, nutty or veggie. Good options are:

● Mainline’s Cell
● Dynamite’s white chocolate and coconut cream
● Maize, sweet corn, chickpeas e

► Step 3 – Fish for one carp at a time. Keep your approach discrete and bait very lightly. Use strategically placed singles, popups, stringers, or other forms of PVA based traps. Keep the addition of pellet to an absolute minimum, instead try adding some particle. Lightly scatter a handful of baits over an area to ensure that the fish have to move between baits. Feed little and often to keep the spot going.

If you apply all three steps, you’ve done the very best you can to single out the carp and avoid the catfish.

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