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Do Catfish Eat Other Catfish? (Here’s What I’ve Learned)

large catfish eating another catfish

If you’ve spent much time at all fishing for catfish, then I’m sure you’ve experienced it just like I have. You find a hole that’s just absolutely loaded with catfish. I’m talking about the kind of day where your bait can barely hit the surface of the water before you’ve got a fish on.

Those are epic days of fishing. But I’ve often wondered how in the hell all those catfish can live down there literally lying on top of each other (at least that’s what I imagine it looks like down there at the bottom). I mean, it’s got to be a literal carpet of catfish.

How are they all able to survive down there? Is there even enough food around to support all of them? Surely there’s something that those fish are feeding on because they’ve clearly been around awhile.

Read More: The Best Fishing Line For Catfishing

Do Catfish Eat Other Catfish?

As catfish get older and larger, their appetites grow right along with them. With that said, competition for food sources can become fierce. Once large enough, you’ll find that it’s quite common for most species of catfish to prey on and eat other species of fish.

But what about other catfish? In short, yes. Catfish do eat other catfish. This typically happens though with the very large species of catfish, such as the flathead. Flatheads are know predators of smaller species of catfish like the channel catfish and will eat them when given the chance.

However, that is only one example of a common species of catfish that feed on other catfish. With over 3000 known species of catfish in the world, you can imagine that more of this occurs between different species.

Combined with the fact that catfish are opportunistic feeders, are omnivores and will eat just about anything, it’s no surprise that catfish eat other catfish.

Written by Don

When I'm not bass fishing or looking for steelhead in my home state of Oregon I can be found working on house projects dreaming of my next fishing adventure.

I started this website to share just some of the things I've learned along my fishing journey, and the many things I'm still learning. Enjoy!

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