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Channel Catfish

Watch a video about using channel catfish for recreational fish ponds.

Channel catfish add one more catchable species.Channel catfish can be stocked in fertilized bass and bream ponds at the rate of 50-100 per acre. At high stocking rates, channel catfish are very competitive with bream and can reduce bream growth and abundance. When catfish attain larger sizes (over 15 inches), they may compete with bass by preying upon bream.  When bream numbers decline, bass growth is also affected.

If more catfish are desired or the pond is less than ½ acre, owners may wish to consider stocking only catfish. Information on catfish production can be obtained from the local county extension office, or the Auburn University Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquaculture, Swingle Hall, Auburn, Alabama 36849, or the Alabama Fish Farming Center, P.O. Box 487, Greensboro, Alabama 36744.

Channel catfish are not stocked in private ponds by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, but fingerlings must be purchased from commercial producers. A list of commercial producers is available from the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.

The above information came from the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division's booklet Sportfish Management in Alabama Ponds, which is available as a PDF.

 Graves Lovell with two big blue or hybrid catfish from a pond.
Ponds can produce big channel catfish, big blue catfish and big hybrid catfish, but pond owners should be concerned about the effect of catfish stocking on other species in the pond.

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