Targeting catfish in a pond takes on a whole new flavor compared to fishing a big river or reservoir.
Catfish in the bigger waters typically feed on shad or skipjack herring and shad. In a pond, however, the primary food source is sunfish and minnows. Naturally a live sunnie or minnow, or cut bait made from them) is your best bait bet.In ponds where running water supplies oxygen and cooler temps, catfish generally hold in the deepest holes available. A dammed pond will usually have a deep hole at the base of the dam where earth was removed to build the structure.
Dug or bulldozed ponds are often fed by runoff. They may stratify into distinct temperature layers, which means the deepest water is too oxygen-poor to support baitfish or catfish in midsummer or winter. In this case, dangling a bait just a few feet below a float will catch more cats than fishing on the bottom. Look for fish around points, along weedlines, in pockets along the shoreline and in shaded areas along the bank.
Inflowing water attracts catfish in any type of pond, and muddy runoff triggers feeding activity because it carries insects, earthworms and other morsels catfish eat.
Artificial lures, especially rattling, lipless cranks will cause a competitive reaction among pond-dwelling catfish. Perhaps the biggest advantage in using an artificial is your ability to cover a lot of water-a definite benefit for shore bound anglers.