Most of the fishing is done here using a feeder and a 2″-5″ length of line to the hook. This is the kind of set-up you will see on most fishing park rods.
The feeder is loaded up with bait (usually flavoured breadcrumbs or ground rice husks) and some bread is put on the hook.
Here’s a selection of feeders commonly seen in Thailand.
The first feeder here the centre wire is prone to breakage, avoid these.
The middle three feeders are well put together with braid and are unlikely to break. The only place I have seen these is at Rigger shop.
The cage type feeder on the right seems to hold more bait and sheds bait faster than the coil type feeders.
This is the kind of set-up you will need for the Mekong giant catfish at Pattaya Fishing Park. It uses the cage type feeder, some 60lb braid, two strong swivels and a size 16 hook.
You can also buy floating feeders.
Or build your own rigs, the set-up below is designed to hold the feeder at about 12″ deep.
Suitable hook sizes are between 8 and 18 depending on the type and size of fish you are targeting. For most of the parks with 2-8kg catfish and small rohu a size 8-12 hook is good. When you are fishing for large Mekong catfish hook size 15-18 is recommended. Break off the barb using pliers, it does less harm to the fish and makes the hook much easier to remove. Always take some pointed nosed pliers or a disgorger with you to make sure you can remove the hook. If you are fishing in a lake with pacu use some strong braid for the hook link as they will easily bite through mono-filament. I use the palomar for most of my knots, it’s easy to tie and tied properly retains more than 90% of the line’s strength. The plastic beads are used to stop the floats and feeders getting stuck on or damaging the knots.
Getting started, tackle you will need:
- floats, buy 3 or 4 medium sized
- feeders, buy 6 – 10 in a selection of sizes both coil and cage type
- hooks, buy sizes 10 and 12, for the large catfish at Pattaya Fishing Park size 16 also
- plastic beads
- a few metres of strong braid
Here are a few of the set-ups I have used:
- Floating feeder, great for the evenings when the fish are rising to the surface.
- Floating rig to hold the feeder at around 9″ deep. This setup with the small weighted feeder works well at Paifon where little bait is needed but longer casts are required.
- Versatile rig with float and feeder running free on main line. Use as pictured to drop the feeder onto the bottom with the float marking the position of your tackle. Tie an elastic band to the line above the float to hold the feeder at a set depth.
- A slow sinking feeder.
- Weighted fixed feeder, this is the setup I prefer for fishing on the bottom.
- A “line through” feeder rigged for fishing on the bottom. This seems to be the best setup for Pattaya Fishing Park.
- Feeder running free on main line. This allows the fish to suck in the baited hook easily but can lead to hooking deep inside the fish.
I’ve had quite a few people ask me about Thai hook sizes, The picture below shows from left to right hook sizes 6, 8, 10, 12, 14 and 16.