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OK, I need to get some meat in the freezer and I'm thinking about getting more bang for my buck and going for large cats in some local ponds. Are the bigger ones, like 24"+ any good to eat?
Thanks, Al
 

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I like most fish. The big cats, like 8lbs and up -to me- dont taste nearly as well as the smaller ones. Like 5lbs and under. JMO
 
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I agree. The big (8-15 lb.) cats that I've eaten tend to have a lot of fat on their sides that must be filleted off. If not, it really tastes bad. I have a hard time getting it all off. Even with the fat off, the fillets don't taste near as good as smaller cats.
 

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I like em under 15lbs, but these guys in Neb. and KS they eat em up to 20. They say after 20lbs the meat taste bad. I notice a difference in the under 5lbs and the under 15lbs. But i have never caught one over 20lbs so I dont know when they are that big. Good eaters will start to come out of the Platte near Lewellen in Nebraska towards the end of the month, and they come in quantities. Eat em. O0 O0

Dont eat the fat on the belly of catfish. Toxins are stored in the fat.
 

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The larger fish in different areas of the country with a longer growing season are best not compared to our fish.

In a typical scenario those fish are younger and taste better. Age has more to do with it than size, but without a scale sample or extracting an otolith, it is very difficult to determine the age of a particular fish.

All in all, biger fish DO tend to be older, in most cases. But it is not always the case. You might catch a laker that is 20 inches long and thirty years old. I would not want to eat a thirty year old fish!

Stick with pan-sized fish, they are called that for a reason! ;D

SS
 

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A 2 lb channel cat from good clear water is excellent. Much over 3 or 4 lbs and I don't think the flavor is nearly as good.
 

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I won't eat big channels but will eat blues and flatheads as big as i can catch em. I have eaten 60lb blue that might have been the best fish I have ever eaten.........except walleye ;)
 

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There are too many reasons to release a catfish that size in Colorado besides Taste, IMO.

Colorado doesn't have loads and loads of big cats like some other states do.. so especially in Colorado.. and especially in small ponds.. it is best to release the larger fish and keep the smaller ones.(Selective Harvest)

Taste isn't even a consideration for me.. Though I agree with the rest of the posts... I have heard that the larger fish taste like crap!
 

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RVinson said:
There are too many reasons to release a catfish that size in Colorado besides Taste, IMO.

Colorado doesn't have loads and loads of big cats like some other states do.. so especially in Colorado.. and especially in small ponds.. it is best to release the larger fish and keep the smaller ones.(Selective Harvest)

Taste isn't even a consideration for me.. Though I agree with the rest of the posts... I have heard that the larger fish taste like crap!
I support this message.
 

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MadJas said:
I won't eat big channels but will eat blues and flatheads as big as i can catch em. I have eaten 60lb blue that might have been the best fish I have ever eaten.........except walleye ;)
I have eaten larger flats (Texas) so I can agree with that...to a degree. 10 ponders, no matter where from is about my limit on those.

By the way, shovelheads taste better than channels, but not by much. ;)
 

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I have never eaten a catfish of any size, from any body of water, that didn't taste like I was eating silt from the bottom of a still pond. Blech.
 

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Myth Lab said:
I have never eaten a catfish of any size, from any body of water, that didn't taste like I was eating silt from the bottom of a still pond. Blech.
I hear this from many people, but I've never personally found this to be true.... Cats are top predators, they eat baitfish just like any other predator fish. I've never eaten a "muddy" tasting cat.

But, eh....to each their own...maybe some folks sense of taste are for more tuned to notice things like that than others...
 
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