Tennesseans are hooked on catching catfish

Local News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A few weeks ago, we reported that because of COVID-19 there has been a record number of fishing licences sold in Tennessee this year, as people yearn to get outdoors.

Besides the fishing tales of ‘the ones that got away,’ there have also been some successes. Catfish are one of the more popular fish to catch, and also to eat here in Middle Tennessee.

And this summer during our Fishing Funcatular segments on weekend mornings, we showed some humongous catfish caught in Tennessee lakes and rivers. There are six species of catfish here in Middle Tennessee. Which ones are the biggest?

“Blues are what a lot of people see the most,” explained Eric Ganus, TWRA Commercial Fishing Coordinator, “And that’s going to be our state record fish on the sportfishing side at 112 pounds. Blues are just a larger fish. It’s a larger fish species. They’re going to grow to over 100 pounds, depending on the system.”

“And a really big channel catfish is going to get into the 20s-30s, which is what most people are going to see.”

“And of course, flatheads are going to be right up there with blues at well over 100 pounds.”

And if you want a good dinner, the fish don’t have to be monsters. A nice 2-4 lb. catfish is the perfect eating size!

“Those fish, a lot of the time will be coming home for family fish fries,” Ganus explained, “It’s just an enjoyable pastime for me, and I know for everyone else that I am friends with in the state. It’s something that people grow up and do. It’s a southern pastime for me.”

I don’t know about you, but I’m getting hungry!

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