Most catfish will eat crappies and basically any other smaller fish they can get their mouths on. Especially adult catfish, who don’t tend to be too picky. However, there are several species of catfish out there. While their feeding habits are more or less similar, there are differences to be noted here and there.
Do all Catfish eat Crappie?
Crappies are small fish. An average crappie will weigh around three pounds, which is not a lot. They are usually a few sizes smaller than channel catfish and flathead catfish. Since catfish are omnivores, other fish constitute a big part of their diets. They are predatory fish, but it’s difficult to prey on bigger targets. Considering that, crappies are an ideal target for most catfish species out there. They’re neither too small nor too big and can be gobbled up by the catfish for a satisfying meal. Of course, that’s only if the catfish is an adult and has grown to its full size.
Is Crappie a Good Bait for Catching Catfish?
Crappies are considered to be one of the most delicious panfish out there. Most people who catch crappies prefer to cook them and have a fulfilling meal. Or they just enjoy the sight of it before throwing it back into the water. However, one more interesting use of crappie is as bait.
Crappies can be bait for catching catfish. In fact, they can be used as bait for just about any predatory fish out there, but catfish, in particular, are known never to miss crappies if they come across them. They are considered one of the most effective baits for flathead catfish and blue catfish, as it seems to be a favorite food of theirs. Flatheads tend to be very swift and prefer to feast on smaller fish. Hence, there is a bigger chance of them biting into the bait.
It’s not at all uncommon for anglers to use crappie as catfish bait. To get the best results, you should cut the crappie into pieces and then throw it into the water. The smell of the raw, uncovered flesh of the crappie will attract the catfish even more toward the hook.
Can Crappie and Catfish be kept in the same pond?
Catfish don’t develop their predatory nature when they are still juvenile. When they are still babies, they can be kept in the same pond as crappies. However, you have to monitor the growth of the catfish carefully. Once they start to reach the same size as the crappies, they will also start to develop their predatory nature. If they grow bigger, they will attack the crappie.
The more catfish grow, the hungrier they become. This is why they eventually become scavengers. Their hunger is so deep that they don’t even care what they are eating as long as their taste buds tell them that it’s edible. This means that if you leave growing catfish and crappies in the same pond, you will soon see that there are no crappies left in the pond. you will have to move them to a different location after they grow a little.
In fact, catfish are known to be one of the hindrances for the crappie population in the wild. If they manage to find schools of newly hatched crappies, they will feed on all of them at once. Since catfish tend to be quite a hungry species of fish, this is no big deal for them.
Can you catch Crappie to use as bait for Catfish?
Most people don’t catch crappies to use as bait. In fact, it’s considered quite a waste to catch crappie and not get to enjoy the rich, mouth-watering taste the flesh offers. However, these days, more and more anglers catch crappies purely to use them as bait.
The reason behind this method’s popularity is obvious because it’s effective. Compared to most of the other common feeds used as bait, crappie is less likely to fail. You can catch crappie to use as bait, especially for catfish like channel catfish, flathead catfish, or blue catfish.
It’s also convenient since crappies swim in groups. You can easily catch them in large amounts, and you don’t have to use the whole crappie as bait. A piece of its flesh is more than enough to lure in the predators.
Do catfish eat other catfish?
If adult catfish can eat crappies because crappies are much smaller in size than them, then does that mean larger catfish can feed on smaller catfish? As unsettling as it is, the answer is they can. Catfish are one of the few fishes that display this brutal behavior.
In fact, catfish can eat members of their own species when they are only fingerlings. Catfish fingerlings between the ages of 3-4 weeks and juveniles of up to 8 weeks are most commonly seen feeding on their own kind. This becomes less common but not entirely so as the catfish become adults. Larger catfish can feed on smaller ones if they are too hungry. Larger catfish of one species can feed on smaller catfish of another species too. In short, they have no sense of kinship among their family.
This goes for both the wild farms and the cultivation farms. Catfish are not picky eaters. Their only goal is to survive, and they will eat whatever they have to in order to do so as long as the target is edible, they will eat it. That is why when anglers catch a dead catfish, instead of discarding it, they often use it as bait to catch other catfish. It might not always be as effective as crappie, but there’s not much difference to a catfish. There is a good chance they will fall into the trap if they come across it.
As you can see, catfish have versatile eating habits. This allows you to catch them with a variety of bait, but crappies easily become a popular choice.