August is National Catfish Month!

(From the archives: originally published August 26, 2015 on WNP's previous website)

Who knew? August is National Catfish Month! In the late 1980s, the United States Congress designated August as National Catfish Month to recognize the importance of this all-American product and the hard work of those who bring it to our tables. Catfish not only contributes to our economy, but also provides consumers with a healthy, delicious, and fresh-tasting fish.

We here at the Wide Net Project are excited to have a month dedicated to our favorite fish!  We thought, in honor of National Catfish Month, we’d share some fun facts about this incredible fish.

  1. Contrary to popular myth, catfish do not sting!  If handling a catfish, however, be wary of their sharp dorsal and pectoral fins.  If these puncture the skin, it can cause some discomfort.

  2. Catfish have heightened senses of smell and taste.

  3. Catfish never stop growing!  And they can live for nearly 20 years, making for some big fish.

  4. In 2012, the largest blue catfish ever caught in Maryland weighed in at 84 pounds.  The largest blue catfish caught in Virginia weighed 102 pounds!  That catch was in 2009.

  5. Spawning occurs from late May to early June.  The parents build nests for their eggs in dark, protected areas.

  6. Their barbels (whiskers) are more important than sight in finding food.

  7. Blue catfish are an absolutely delicious and healthy meal! See last week’s blog post for a few of our favorite recipes.