Redhorse fish, also known as red horse suckerfish, are one of the most popular freshwater fish in North America, due to their aggressive personalities and great taste. They’re not exactly the easiest fish to catch, however – they’re fast, strong, and have teeth on the lower jaw. If you’re looking to catch redhorse fish, follow the steps below and you’ll have one in no time!
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What is Redhorse Fish?
Before we talk about how to catch redhorse fish, it’s important to first understand what kind of fish suckers are. Redhorse fish are native to central North America, including Lake Erie and Great Lakes.
They’re often caught by anglers and have earned good reputations for their fight and taste. The average size of these fish is about 15 inches long, but some specimens can reach 24 inches and weigh up to 12 pounds.
When kept under control on a line, however, these fish can provide hours of fishing fun for anglers of all skill levels.
Because redhorse fish tend to not travel far from shore and eat mostly mollusks that grow on rocks along banks or mudflats, you’ll find them most frequently around deep river bottoms with shallow areas close by where they rest between feeding bouts.
How to Catch Redhorse Sucker Fish
Despite its name, redhorse suckers are actually catfish and are commonly found throughout North America.
Although they aren’t exactly hard to catch, many people find that trying to reel one in is quite difficult. To successfully catch a redhorse sucker fish requires patience and an understanding of where it likes to hide.
The following tips will help you catch as many as you can:
Choose the Best Spot to Go Fishing for Redhorses
If you want to fish for redhorse sucker fish, make sure you’re fishing where they live. Suckerfish tend to hang out near rivers, large lakes, or wetlands and ponds.
Before you start fishing for redhorse sucker fish, make sure that it’s legal to do so. Some bodies of water have special laws about what types of fish can be caught. Check with local government officials before fishing for redhorse sucker fish at your location.
As a result of their fast-moving environment, it might be difficult to catch some species of fish. An excellent place to look for these fish is beneath bridges. Once you know where they are, catching these fish is a cinch. They’ll eat everything you put in front of them, and they’ll eat it happily.
It makes no difference whether you go for these fish from the beach or from a boat. With a boat, you’ll be able to take advantage of currents and position your bait more precisely. Weight may be required to get these baits to sink to the bottom in fast-moving water.
In order to catch fish, you’ll need to utilize live bait that’s attached to the bottom of a lake. Suckerfish feed on the lake bottom’s organic matter. If you’re even a few feet above the water’s surface, you’ll probably miss them.
Have All the Basic Necessities
Before you can begin fishing for redhorse, you’ll need to equip yourself with some basic necessities.
Fishing poles, nets, and bait all come standard; you may also want to bring along rain gear, sunscreen, and insect repellent.
Learn about Bait Options for Red Horse Fish
If you want to catch red horse sucker fish, it’s important that you know which bait is best for them! There are many different types of bait options available for red horse sucker fish. You should learn about each one before deciding.
A worm and a hook are all you need to catch sucker fish with a simple bait. Let your bait drop to the bottom once you’ve added weight to it.
Cast and drag is the optimum method for this sort of lure combination, using the three-way sinker or the spinner-worm harness.
Fish avoid getting tangled up while dragging your lure down the bottom so we like to use a hook and sinker setup. A basic jig and twister-tale can work just fine if you don’t want to use worms; however, live bait tends to be more effective.
Choose Your Method for Catching a Redhorse
You’ll also need to determine which method suits your fishing style. The methods for catching redhorse can differ from angler to angler.
Often times these differences will come down to where and when you are fishing, as well as what kind of bait or lure you’re using. But there are also many similarities that all anglers who want to catch redhorse fish will follow.
Below is an outline of how redhorse fish can be caught by different types of anglers. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to choose wisely based on your location and situation.
- Hook and Line: This is one of the most common ways to catch red horse suckers, especially if you’re targeting them during their spawning season. Hooking them up with a hook and line is easy, but they do have a tendency to get away before they can be brought into shore if they aren’t hooked securely enough. It’s best to use heavy tackle when trying to hook them up with just a hook and line because lighter tackle won’t hold up under their weight.
- Fly Fishing: Fly fishing for redhorse fish is becoming increasingly popular, mainly due to its difficulty level. Because fly fishing takes more skill than other forms of angling, it often leads to a greater sense of accomplishment once you actually land one.
- Spear Fishing: Spearfishing for redhorse fish isn’t really considered caught since they are killed instantly upon being speared through their brain. However, spearfishing does offer some advantages over other forms of angling such as not having to deal with live bait and not having to fight against very strong currents like you would if you were fly fishing or using a hook and fluorocarbon line.
We hope you now know how to catch redhorse fish, wherever you do your fishing from.
Just remember these are tasty fish that you can use for your dinner table fare. Once you’ve caught your redhorse fish, store it properly until you get home so that it doesn’t start to rot.
It’s also important to follow any local regulations regarding catch-and-release fishing—just because you’ve got a new fish doesn’t mean you should kill it and toss it back! Happy redhorse fishing!
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