Species Info

Blue catfish

Type:  Catfish

Appearance:  Adults have stout bodies with a hump in front of the dorsal fin. They resemble channel catfish with deeply forked tails, but lack spots and have a longer, straight-edged anal fin. The back and upper sides are blue to slate gray, and the belly is white.

State record:  64.5 lbs.

BigCatch:  To qualify your catch needs to exceed the listed weight OR length (not necessarily both).

Habitat:  Originally found in the Escambia and Yellow rivers in northwest Florida, they are now also in the Apalachicola, Choctawhatchee and Suwannee. Blues occur in big rivers and in the lower reaches of major tributaries. They prefer clearer, swifter water than other catfish, and are usually found over sand, gravel or rock bottoms.

Behavior:  Young blues eat aquatic insects and small fish while larger blues prefer crayfish, mussels and other fish. FWC encourages their harvest.

Tips:  One of the strongest freshwater fish; blues are caught on bush hooks or trotlines as well as rod and reel. Most are caught bottom fishing with cut fish, or stinkbaits rigged on large hooks with heavy lead sinkers.

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