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The Best Fishing Spots For Catfish In Maryland

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Guide to fishing for blue and channel catfish in MD.

For avid catfish anglers, Maryland offers an array of opportunities to pursue different catfish species, including channel catfish, flathead catfish, blue catfish, and white catfish. One of the most popular targets is the channel catfish, known for its strong fighting ability and delicious flesh. The Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries, such as the Potomac River, are prime locations to hook into sizable channel catfish. These brackish and freshwater areas provide ample feeding grounds for channel catfish, making them an appealing catch for anglers.

Maryland is also home to impressive flathead catfish populations, which are highly sought after for their large size and challenging nature. Rivers like the Susquehanna, Patapsco, and Potomac are known for harboring flathead catfish. These powerful predators prefer live baits and can grow to remarkable sizes, providing an exciting challenge for experienced anglers.

Another prominent catfish species in Maryland is the blue catfish. These voracious predators are found primarily in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. Blue catfish can reach impressive sizes, with some specimens exceeding 100 pounds. Anglers targeting blue catfish often employ cut bait or live bait to entice these giants.

Lastly, Maryland is home to the white catfish, a smaller catfish species that inhabits various freshwater bodies throughout the state. These catfish can be found in rivers, reservoirs, and lakes, including the Patuxent River and Deep Creek Lake. White catfish are known for their willingness to bite a wide range of baits, making them an excellent target for anglers of all skill levels.

When it comes to catfish fishing in Maryland, the warmer months tend to be the most productive. Spring through fall provides optimal conditions for catfish activity, as water temperatures rise and catfish become more active. However, catfish can still be caught during cooler months, especially in deeper sections of rivers and reservoirs. Regardless of the season, Maryland's diverse catfish populations ensure that anglers have ample opportunities to test their skills and reel in some impressive catches.

Catfish Fishing Lakes in Maryland

Catfish fishing in Maryland

The vast majority if fishing waters contain one or more types of catfish. Most rivers and streams as well a s ponds are likely to hold catfish. The larger lakes with healthy populations of catfish include Broadford Lake, Jennings Randolph Lake, Liberty Reservoir, Little Seneca Lake, Loch Raven Reservoir, Prettyboy Reservoir, Rocky Gorge Reservoir and Triadelphia Reservoir.

Fishing Boats For Rent In MD

Catfish in Maryland

Channel Catfish

Channel catfish

World record: 58 lbs 0 oz

State Record: 27.9 lbs

Flathead Catfish

Flathead catfish

World record: 123 lbs 9 oz

State Record: 40.0 lbsz

Blue Catfish

Blue catfish

World record: 143 lbs 0 oz

State Record: 84.0 lbs

White Catfish

White catfish

World record: 22 lbs 0 oz

State Record: 7.0 lbs

Click the images and links above for species details.

What's the best bait for catfish in Maryland?

Choose from the top 5 all-time catfish baits and try them on local waters. Appealing to the keen sense of smell and taste could turn a so-so day into a memorable event.

Maryland State Record Catfish

The state record channel catfish was caught in the Upper Potomac River.

The state record flathead catfish came from (unknown)..

The state record blue catfish came out of the Potomac River.

The state record white catfish came from (unknown).

Catfish fishing from the bank

There are many species of catfish and even more ways to catch them. Adults range in size from less than a pound to hundreds of pounds. Catfish are found in all types of water including ponds, streams, lakes and rivers throughout Maryland. There are even species which spend a limited amount of time on dry land. Big giant catfish put up a very noble fight once hooked.

Most catfish are considered bottom feeders to one extent or another. They will generally eat anything that can get in their mouth. Their strongest sense is smell which they use to locate potential food sources. Capitalizing on this sense is the primary weapon in your search for these creatures. Aggressive catfish have been caught on most types of fast moving bass lures so don't under estimate their ability to catch live bait.

Catfish Fishing Video

Additional catfishing information resources.

Catfish Conservation Group

U.S. Catfish Anglers Tournaments

Planet Catfish


Information for states with catfish.

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