Differences Between a Catfish Rod and a Grouper Rod

A fishing rod is used to capture fish in different types of waterways. Catfish and groupers are distinctly different types of fish to go after by anglers. Since both fish are built differently, they have different rods requirements.The catfish rod needs to be light and easy to use, whereas the grouper rod needs to be tough and durable. To learn more about rods and which one is best suited for which fish, keep reading this article.

Why do the rods need to be different for catfish and grouper?

The main reason is the difference between the two fish. Usually, catfish is a smaller fish than grouper, which can get huge in size. Moreover, groupers are hidden at the bottom of the ocean and need to be lured out, but catfish are less complicated to catch.

The rods used to catch catfish will not be as useful when used on groupers and will break easily. Of course, there is a chance of one rod working for both fish, but it is rare and depends on luck and not skill. Therefore, depending on the type of fish you plan on catching, you should purchase a rod according to the need and requirements.

fishing rod

Requirements for Catfish rods

If you want to catch catfish, you need to buy a rod that will help you catch all types of catfish because the one-type-fits-all type of rods are not very effective and cost too much. Here are some tips you need to keep in mind when selecting a rod for catfish.

Determine the catfish you want to catch

There are many different catfish types, and the fish species change from place to place depending on where you are fishing. There are three main types of catfish for fishing: blue, flathead, and channel fish. The channel catfish are the smallest of these three, and the blue catfish are the biggest. If you want to attract channel catfish, the rod should be small with high sensitivity so it can notice if a three-pound or five-pound fish touches it; when the size of the fish gets bigger, the heavier rod you need. Generally, for catfish, a medium-heavy rod is best. If the rod is too heavy, it can be counterproductive and will take the fun out of fishing.

Material of the rod

The rod should be able to handle the catfish that puts up a lot of fight and pull it out without snapping. This, of course, also depends on the proper technique, but a good rod can also make a huge difference. The rod you choose should be compatible with the hook you have and of good quality material, making it the easiest to work with. E-glass and S-glass rods are durable and will last a long while, so they are the standard rod materials used by catfish fishermen. Graphite, carbon fiber, and composite rods can also be used. However, these glass rods should be preferred because they are the most comfortable to use, especially if you are not used to other materials.

Size of the rod

The average size of the catfish rod is 6 feet or 6 foot 6 inches which is also the average size of the rods available in the stores. A long rod is very helpful as it improves the throw’s accuracy and helps control the catfish. If you plan on catching smaller catfish, then a smaller rod size could work, but you absolutely need a longer rod for a larger catfish. Therefore, it is best to get a longer rod as it will be useful in the long term, but if you can’t find one, a smaller one can work as well.

Requirements for Grouper rods

As you know, the behavior of grouper is much different than catfish. This is why the rod that should be used for grouper needs to be different than the one you would use for a catfish. Usually, to catch the grouper, you need to use trolling technique to lure the grouper out. Here are some of the requirements.

Determine the grouper you want to catch

There are many species of groupers, but if you are in the United States, there are four main species of groupers: gag grouper, black grouper, red grouper, and goliath grouper. Catching goliath grouper was previously illegal, but there has been a small amount allowed for a short timeframe in Florida. Make sure and check the regulations before you would go after all fish. As most groupers are pretty large, the rod needed to catch the grouper should be heavy-duty and durable so it can reel them in before they can free themselves. The power of the rod should not be less than 50 pounds, or it can snap. Therefore, a heavy rod should be used to catch the rod, although it will require some practice to use it properly.

Material of the rod

Just like catfish rods, the material best for grouper is fiberglass. An E-glass or an S-glass rod can be bent without snapping, and it can handle a ton of weight which makes it suitable. Another rod material that can be used is carbon fiber, although it might break more easily. If you plan on catching a grouper on the smaller size, these can work well. Don’t use graphite rods at all because those will snap in no time; graphite rods are only useful for smaller fish. Therefore, the best rod is fiberglass rod which is also a classic material.

Size of the rod

As you know, the size of the rod depends heavily on the size of the fish; a longer rod is absolutely necessary for catching grouper. The rods found most commonly in markets are still not long enough to catch groupers that struggle a lot. You will need a rod of at least 8 inches which is the perfect length to handle a huge grouper. Not to mention, groupers are found at the bottom of the ocean, so the rod should be long enough to reach them. A longer rod will also protect the fish from harming its scales, so it is in good condition.


Now you know the difference between rods used to catch catfish and groupers. It is not possible to find a rod that works because of the size difference between groupers and catfish. Therefore, you need a bendable, light, and average-length rod for catching catfish. However, for grouper, you need a bendable, heavy, and very long rod.

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