Catfish Species.

How many species of Catfish are there?

There are about 2867 species of Catfish in the world although that number varies at times. It is divided into 37 families.The newest family of Catfish was found in June of 2005.

The most common Catfish species in the United States are Channel Cats, Blue Cats, Flatheads, Bullheads and White Cats.  The most abundunt species are the Bullheads. 

The Catfish species includes freshwater catfish, saltwater cats, walking cats that have a modified gill enabling them to breathe air as they move between bodies of water and electric cats that can deliver a 100 volt shot of electricity.

All species of catfish are negatively buoyant, meaning that they usually sink rather than float.  They are scavangers and will eat just about anything and are found in just about every type of lake, stream, river and pond.

All catfish are smooth skinned, with no scales, and have anywhere from 2 to 8 ‘whiskers’.   They aren’t very social and prefer to feed along the bottom and in areas near a dam where small, torn pieces of fish can be found and like to hide in brushy areas and near or in crevices or under ledges.

There is a giant species of Catfish found in Southeast Asia. They can exceed 7 foot in length and weigh more than 250 pounds. Also in the Eurasian family of cats is one that typically grows 12 feet long and weighs hundreds of pounds.  

Catfish are one of the largest species groups.  The number and variety of Cats are amazing and new varieties are being discovered all the time.  


Dan Eggertsen is a fellow catfish fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on catfish fishing since 2004.

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