How to Use Bluegill for Catfish Bait


Catfish are exciting to catch because they give up a fantastic fight. Many items can be used as bait for these fish, but bluegill is perhaps one of the easiest to acquire and does a good job of attracting large catfish. Use specific techniques to bait your fishing line with either live or cut bluegill. Both varieties are affective at attracting catfish and will have your stringer full in no time.

Things You'll Need

  • Fishing line
  • Fishing hook
  • Fishing pole
  • Knife
  • Bluegill fish

Cut bait method

  • Cut the head off of the bluegill. This will provide you with two pieces of bait. Catfish prefer their meals bloody, so this technique will help to attract the big ones.

  • Hook the head one-third of the way down the head, starting from the mouth. The heads will stay on the hook better than the rest of the bluegill.

  • Remove the tail from the remaining portion of bluegill. This will leave you with a midsection. Use this as a separate piece of bait. You can dispose of the tail, as it won't stay on the hook well and does not contain enough blood to attract the catfish.

  • Hook the midsection of the bluegill in the top center of the bait. Make sure there is enough meat above the hook so that it won't easily pull from the line. The midsection works well for attracting catfish because it contains internal organs and is full of blood.

Live bait method

  • Hook a live bluegill under the dorsel fin, in the meaty section of the back.

  • Cut a long but shallow slit along one side of the bluegill. The bait fish will bleed slowly as it thrashes in the water, which will attract catfish.

  • Cast your line and let the bluegill do its work. Before long, you will have tugs on your line. Make sure you set the hook when you are confident the catfish has a good grasp of the bait and hook.

  • Use remnants of the live bait as chum.

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