Pine Barrens Catfish Adventure!

NJChileHead

Explorer
Dec 22, 2011
724
464
My sons and I fell in love with fishing over the past few years, but this past summer we've done more than we ever have. All three of us really grew to enjoy pursuing catfish this summer. We came to find out that there are 5 species of catfish in NJ, and by the end of the summer, we had caught four of them*, so one of our endeavors before the end of the year was to try to catch species number 5, the white catfish. The white cats are tolerant of brackish water, so we decided on some points on the lower tidal ends of some pine barrens rivers.

Beautiful morning on the river!

20201106_093153.jpg


After about an hour of waiting, we got our white cats! What beautiful fish they are! Some anglers mistake them for small channel cats, but white cats have white chin barbels and fewer anal rays.

20201106_102150.jpg
20201106_102223_HDR.jpg
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It was a day well spent with family. All catches were released unharmed!

*the other four species of catfish in NJ are yellow bullhead, brown bullhead, channel catfish and flathead.

Thanks for looking!
 

Teegate

Administrator
Site Administrator
Sep 17, 2002
23,209
5,081
Thank you for that report. It is always nice to have an adventure with your kids.
 
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RednekF350

Piney
Feb 20, 2004
4,598
2,334
Pestletown, N.J.
Very nice ! Catfishing is a lot of fun and you can catch some real bruisers in New Jersey. Fishing with family is the best.

I fished catfish tournaments for a few years with two buddies on the Delaware River. They were overnight tournaments and they would attract pros from other States. We chummed with punctured cans of cheap cat food and crushed, dead crabs that we would get from a crab vendor in Gloucester. The chum was lowered to the bottom in a weighted onion sack. We always caught a lot of big 5 - 6 lb. fish but we never even placed. The tournaments were always won by fish far north of 15 lbs.

I am a lawful sportsman but I am not much on catch and release. When the waters are clean, I have kept catfish for the table from the lower Mullica and Stow Creek in deep South Jersey. They are very good eating.
 
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NJChileHead

Explorer
Dec 22, 2011
724
464
Very nice ! Catfishing is a lot of fun and you can catch some real bruisers in New Jersey. Fishing with family is the best.

I fished catfish tournaments for a few years with two buddies on the Delaware River. They were overnight tournaments and they would attract pros from other States. We chummed with punctured cans of cheap cat food and crushed, dead crabs that we would get from a crab vendor in Gloucester. The chum was lowered to the bottom in a weighted onion sack. We always caught a lot of big 5 - 6 lb. fish but we never even placed. The tournaments were always won by fish far north of 15 lbs.

I am a lawful sportsman but I am not much on catch and release. When the waters are clean, I have kept catfish for the table from the lower Mullica and Stow Creek in deep South Jersey. They are very good eating.

Hey Rednek350, we've eaten channel cats before but I thought there were mercury advisories for most of the Pine Barrens? That's good info about the Delaware. We want to get out there next year more often. My sons are just crazy about catfishing. Give them a pond with bullhead in it and they're set for the day!
 
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Reactions: RednekF350
My sons and I fell in love with fishing over the past few years, but this past summer we've done more than we ever have. All three of us really grew to enjoy pursuing catfish this summer. We came to find out that there are 5 species of catfish in NJ, and by the end of the summer, we had caught four of them*, so one of our endeavors before the end of the year was to try to catch species number 5, the white catfish. The white cats are tolerant of brackish water, so we decided on some points on the lower tidal ends of some pine barrens rivers.

Beautiful morning on the river!

View attachment 14314

After about an hour of waiting, we got our white cats! What beautiful fish they are! Some anglers mistake them for small channel cats, but white cats have white chin barbels and fewer anal rays.

View attachment 14315View attachment 14316View attachment 14317

It was a day well spent with family. All catches were released unharmed!

*the other four species of catfish in NJ are yellow bullhead, brown bullhead, channel catfish and flathead.

Thanks for looking!
My sons and I fell in love with fishing over the past few years, but this past summer we've done more than we ever have. All three of us really grew to enjoy pursuing catfish this summer. We came to find out that there are 5 species of catfish in NJ, and by the end of the summer, we had caught four of them*, so one of our endeavors before the end of the year was to try to catch species number 5, the white catfish. The white cats are tolerant of brackish water, so we decided on some points on the lower tidal ends of some pine barrens rivers.

Beautiful morning on the river!

View attachment 14314

After about an hour of waiting, we got our white cats! What beautiful fish they are! Some anglers mistake them for small channel cats, but white cats have white chin barbels and fewer anal rays.

View attachment 14315View attachment 14316View attachment 14317

It was a day well spent with family. All catches were released unharmed!

*the other four species of catfish in NJ are yellow bullhead, brown bullhead, channel catfish and flathead.

Thanks for looking!

That first picture is wonderfull. Thank you!
 

RednekF350

Piney
Feb 20, 2004
4,598
2,334
Pestletown, N.J.
Hey Rednek350, we've eaten channel cats before but I thought there were mercury advisories for most of the Pine Barrens? That's good info about the Delaware. We want to get out there next year more often. My sons are just crazy about catfishing. Give them a pond with bullhead in it and they're set for the day!
I never worried about the mercury. It's a by product of acid rain and I don't eat enough freshwater fish to be concerned about it. I do however eat a lot of striper, bluefish and tuna in the summer. A benefit of that is being able to estimate air temperature within a half of degree. :)
 
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