Women Noodling for Catfish
Angie Fox shows women
are tough as a group of extreme women go noodling for catfish. Although the
concept of catching fish with only the use of the arm in the water is simple
enough, the process of noodling is more complicated. The choice of catfish as
the prey is not arbitrary, but comes from the circumstances of their habitat.
Flathead catfish live in holes or under brush in rivers and lakes and thus are
easy to capture due to the static nature of their dwelling. To begin, a noodler
goes underwater to depths ranging from only a few feet to up to twenty feet and
places his hand inside a discovered catfish hole. If all goes as planned, the
catfish will swim forward and latch onto the fisherman's hand, usually as a
defensive maneuver, in order to try to escape the hole. If the fish is
particularly large, the noodler can hook the hand around its gills.
Most noodlers have spotters who help them bring the catfish in, either to shore
or to their boat. When a catfish bites onto a noodler, it holds on for quite a
while. With some of the biggest fish caught weighing in at up to 50-60 pounds,
very few noodlers are strong enough to attempt noodling by themselves. Although
carrying the fish after they have been subdued is not difficult, trying to
secure a fish and remove it from one's hand at the same time can be a challenge.