Catfish

whitty

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Not on the lake I fished for roach on the slider,they sit it the margins and wait for you to return roach,these shoot off,but still get munched,I agree they are natural to our waterways,but are far more aggressive as a predator,all predators thin out sickly,dying fish,but they also round up and ambush healthy ones,natures way i'm afraid.
 

Keith M

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In Bullers Classic book ‘Pike’ he says that when scientists (I can’t remember the actual details) studied captive Pike they discovered that the Pike can maintain its own weight on just 2.5 to 3.5 times its own weight of food in a whole year, and they suggested that in the wild a healthy Pike could put on weight on just 5 times their own weight in a whole year and that after a decent sized meal a healthy Pike can often go without any further food for around one to two weeks or even more while it’s last meal is being digested.

I can’t remember the actual words but that’s basically the gist of what I read.

Keith
 
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whitty

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Ahhh,but in the real world pike are chasing and catching roach every time I fished the lake,you get three to five pike laying,pointing in your direction,waiting for returned fish....
 

Philip

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in the wild a Pike could put on weight on just 5 times their own weight in a whole year
Compared to between 1.7 and 2.9 x its own weight for a Wels Catfish.

Interestingly Wels also have a consomation index of @11 compared to Pike at @20. Basically thats a measure of the quantity of food eaten / weight gained. The upshot being a Pike has to eat almost twice as much as a Catfish to gain the same weight.

Obviously thats a rough average, it will fluctuate depending on the quality of the water/food available in either case.

Still not a fan but the more I read and see the more I am warming to those bu$$ers I tell you ! 🙂
 

whitty

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Also catfish tend to feed in spurts,where no cats get caught for several days,then several get caught over two or three days....
 

seth49

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I remember talking to a police diver on the lower ribble, and he told me that while he was diving he came face to face with a large catfish, he was very surprised at the size of it, he said he could have put his head in its mouth, I have heard rumours of them in the ribble.
 

mikench

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Here's an interesting and old thread on FM about pike. A few familiar names emerge.


Without hijacking the thread it shows the worth of old posts and that there isn't much new in fishing.
 

whitty

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On the basis of five times their body weight per annum,also allowing for an above average pike population that is an awful lot of fish being munched that have to be replaced by natural breeding success,as said thats without cormorants,grebes,herons,otters,mink perch and natural causes causing mortality,nature is tremendous at keeping a healthy population of prey fish present,most waters have healthy populations of roach,until disasters occur that interupt breeding success...
 

mikench

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Declines and upsurges in populations of predator and prey species of all kinds are a regular event and nature generally restores an equilibrium if allowed to do so. Throw in global warming. Mans interference and mismanagement and nature takes a lot longer. There are good reasons why lions, elephants and Wels catfish do not and should not occur here.

A drought in Africa reduces the numbers of herbivores and other living things which in turn reduces the numbers of predators , insects and plant species. Provided man isn't responsible then a recovery usually ensues.
 

tigger

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On the basis of five times their body weight per annum,also allowing for an above average pike population that is an awful lot of fish being munched that have to be replaced by natural breeding success,as said thats without cormorants,grebes,herons,otters,mink perch and natural causes causing mortality,nature is tremendous at keeping a healthy population of prey fish present,most waters have healthy populations of roach,until disasters occur that interupt breeding success...
So idiotic anglers adding a huge invastive predator on top of those indigenous ones is a bad idea!
 

Ray Roberts

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I don’t advocate stocking them or moving them. The ones in the lake I intend to target were there far longer ago than I’ve been a member. But they are here and in the river systems they will be impossible to eradicate.


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tigger

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I don’t advocate stocking them or moving them. The ones in the lake I intend to target were there far longer ago than I’ve been a member. But they are here and in the river systems they will be impossible to eradicate.


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If people keep catching them and then releasing them then yeah, it will be impossible to erradicate them.

If they aren't released then their chances of breeding is lessened, just common sense.
If it upsets an angler to kill one they can be retained, removed and put into a designated water when caught.
 

The bad one

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I remember talking to a police diver on the lower ribble, and he told me that while he was diving he came face to face with a large catfish, he was very surprised at the size of it, he said he could have put his head in its mouth, I have heard rumours of them in the ribble.
Indeed so they are! Way back, 30 + years or so, it was reported by an angling writer for one of the local papers, who's name I think was Brian Godfery that a Wells catfish was caught in the church pool on Gregson's Farm of 13 lbs.
About 5 years ago a fellow bailiff told me a story of walk the bank on the Brockholes side during the close season and spooking a very large Wells on the gravels on the bend. This bailiff knows his stuff and weights, having had pike to 32 lb from the same area. When I pushed him to put a weight on it he said it was 50lb+ with ease. Other anglers fishing the same area have told me about being flat rodded by fish they could couldn't stop or do anything with. Another mate, ex carper, told me about seeing a small Wells (6-7 lb) around the Ribchester area that swam under his rod tips no more than 3 ft from him. As he was new to river fishing it took him two seasons to tell anybody about what he'd seen, just in case people thought he was a little mad.
So yes I have no doubts whatsoever, Cats are in the Ribble and possibly breeding Seth
 

whitty

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On rivers often unless actually targetting cats it would be unlikely to see many caught,anyone who want to see a very healthy catfish venue with fish from tiny kittens to more than a couple of fish over fifty,biggest i'd heard over 65lbs is the lake I spoke of,yet the place is teeming with roach,perch,plus fair heads of tench,bream,carp and pike,the cats have been there for yonks,the venue has always been a great roach fishery....
 

Badgerale

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Assuming we aren't going to eradicate them, how long does it take before we can say that they fit in ok?

If they are in a water for 40 years and it is still healthy does that mean they are fine.

Or is it indefinite that they are an invasive non-native species? If that's the case then we should start removing carp from our rivers - which I would actually be fine with as it can only be good for the bream and tench which i like a lot more.

Ultimately, I can seeing this going the same as with zander, where there is this big panic about them eating everything - which doesn't end up happening - then they remain with an official kill-on-sight order which everyone just ignores.
 

mikench

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Just to show I do not have an aversion to all catfish , here is one in my own home along with 5 of his mates who disappeared behind the plants. It’s all of 2” long and is a delight.

531C8092-DC07-4FD1-986C-6FFBFC9B5724.jpeg
 
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