I have seen some big catfish in my day but this one weighed in at 131 pounds and is now the record holder.

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Catfishing

chamelle/Getty Images/iStockphoto
chamelle/Getty Images/iStockphoto
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Catfishing is a lot of fun. You can find them in almost all rivers, Great Lakes, and some inland lakes. If you get a big one on it can be a lot of fun as long as you have the right tackle.

There are lots of catfish in the Grand River, Muskegon River, and Kalamazoo River if you are looking to get out and get a meal.

I have seen some nice ones in the Muskegon River but have only tried catching them once but it just wasn't a good night.

I used to go with my dad on the other side of the state to a lake that had a river system running through it and we did pretty well in three different spots.

How To Catch Catfish

Dallas Texas
Thorpeland Phtography/Getty Images
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You can catch them any time of the day or night but I have found fishing for them at night seems to be the best. Some fishermen who know they are going on a certain day sometimes will stop a day early and chum the area where they plan on fishing. What that means is throwing out some corn, crawlers, chicken liver, or whatever stinky kind of bait you plan on using.

Catfish can grow big and are super strong so it helps to have a beefy rod and reel set up with some heavy-pound test line.  I like to use a nice medium Eagle Claw hook and base the sinker on the situation I am fishing in but just cast out and let it set on the bottom. Keep your line tight and an eye on your rod. Some catfish will find the bait, gulp it down and move on and I have seen a few rods go into the water. So never leave your rod unattended.

Using chicken liver is a favorite of mine. The catfish have the whiskers to pick up that blood scent and will be happy to follow that trail to your hook.

Some fishermen put a bell that clips on your rod so it rings when your night fishing to alert you of a bite. You have to be quick to get that bell off to set the hook. It helps if you have a lantern or a small fire to provide light while fishing at night.

New Record Catfish

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Facebook Page
Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Facebook Page
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A catfish that can fill the tailgate of a full-size pickup truck is a monster.

A man by the name of Eugene Cronley just set a new record on the Mississippi River by catching a 131-pound catfish. MLive reported Cronley said, "truly a fish of a lifetime." Do you think? Geez, what a monster fish.

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Facebook Page
Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Facebook Page
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Seeing the two men next to the catfish really gives you a perspective of just how big this beast really is.

This wasn't a fish you just reel in after you hook it. This fish took 40 minutes to get landed. Now that is getting some fishing time in for sure.

The bait Cronley used was skipjack herring. Something you won't find around here but plentiful in Mississippi.

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Facebook Page
Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Facebook Page
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In the photo above you can see the hook and sinker setup the man used to catch the new record fish. Same size hook I use when I get out as well.

The catfish beat the previous record set in 2009 by 36 pounds.

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