How Cold Fronts Affect Fishing for Catfish

Cold fronts tend to affect the fishing more in lakes and ponds than in the rivers.  The bite can slow down tremendously the day after a cold front moves through in lakes and ponds, but in rivers, it seems like it doesn’t have any impact on the fishing at all most of the time.  Catfish will feed heavily before an approaching front, so getting out on the water before the cold front may be your best option if you normally fish lakes and ponds for catfish.

How Warm Fronts Affect Fishing for Catfish

Warm fronts can help improve the fishing especially if the water temperatures are fairly cool.  Catfish like warm water and a warm front will almost always help improve the fishing.  When water temperatures are cool, expect catfish to move into shallower water with a warm front.  During the summer, a warm front will keep fish deep and they may seem difficult to catch during the day.  These fish will still feed heavily, but you may have to target them at night.  They will be much more active and you can find them in shallower water throughout the night.

How the Rain Affects Fishing for Catfish

The rain usually helps to improve the fishing, even very heavy rains.  A light rain may not cause the fish to move drastically, but the bite is usually better with a light rain, especially during the day.  Catfish will often stay somewhat shallower as well during a light rain.  Heavy rains can make fishing tougher for some fish, but not catfish.  In rivers, a heavy rain will cause catfish to make major movements.  Some fish will move upstream towards the dams and spillways.  Other fish will move into backwater areas or into the creeks that feed into the rivers.  Water can be just a few feet deep in these creeks, but there is usually a lot of food in the creeks.  The main food source will be worms that got washed away and small bait fish that are looking to get out of the main current.

In lakes and ponds that don’t have any spillways, dams or feeder creeks, catfish will usually just move into the shallows.  Worms will usually get washed into the shallows and catfish can be found feeding aggressively.

How the Wind Affects Fishing for Catfish

The wind will play a role in where the catfish can be found in lakes and ponds.  In rivers, the current helps position the fish much more than the wind.  In lakes and ponds, the wind-blown shoreline is usually productive.  The wind blows all types of tiny organisms towards the wind-blown shoreline and smaller bait fish will move into these areas to feed.  Bigger fish will follow and catfish are no exception.  Because catfish feed on the bottom most of the time, there are other variables that may have more of an impact on the fishing than the wind, but it doesn’t hurt to try the wind-blown shorelines.  These shorelines will provide some of the better fishing most of the time.

How Clouds Affect Fishing for Catfish

The clouds can help improve the bite tremendously during the day.  Catfish prefer to feed under lowlight conditions and they will often stop feeding and head into deeper water once the sun comes out.  While you may be able to catch plenty of catfish during the day when the sun is out, it is much easier when it is cloudy.  The clouds block enough light from the sun that catfish will often stay in the shallows longer and feed more aggressively throughout the day.

How the Sun Affects Fishing for Catfish

The sun can help the fishing when water temperatures are cold, but for the most part, the sun isn’t going to do a lot to help when fishing for catfish.  The big thing with the sun is to help warm the water up to make catfish more active and that will actually help the fishing, however, that usually doesn’t help the fishing a bunch during the day.  It helps for the peak evening bite and night bite following that sunny day that warmed up the water enough for the catfish to want to be more active.

Otherwise, the sun will almost always push catfish deeper.  In clear water, the bite can be a lot tougher during the day.  In murky water, the bite isn’t affected as much, but you’re still going to almost always have a much better bite going on early morning, late evening and at night.  If you are fishing during the day, expect to be fishing deeper water if you want to catch more catfish.

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