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Really big flathead catfish: Erik Brztowski catches flathead night fishing the Fox River

Erik Brztowski caught a big flathead catfish while night fishing the Fox River to earn Fish of the Week.

Erik Brztowski hoists a big flathead catfish caught while night fishing the Fox River. Provided photo
Erik Brztowski hoists a big flathead catfish caught while night fishing the Fox River.
Provided

On Thursday, Erik Brztowski messaged about the 40.32-pound flathead catfish he caught overnight from the Fox River on an 8-inch bluegill. Brztowski was fishing with his friend Ryan Whalen.

“Fish ate at around 1 a.m.,” Brztowski noted. “Don’t see a fish like that every day on the Fox.”

Don’t see a fish like that from northeastern Illinois waters every day period.

Erik Brztowski (left) and Randy Whalen had a good night of fishing for flathead catfish on the Fox River. Provided photo
Erik Brztowski (left) and Randy Whalen had a good night of fishing for flathead catfish on the Fox River.
Provided

BTW, James Klauzer caught the Illinois record flathead, a bruiser of 81 pounds, 6.4 ounces, on Aug. 29, 2015 from Sangchris Lake. That fish was notable also for being what I think was the first Illinois record caught, verified and released, with a lot of help from the angling community. Click here to read that story.

FOTW, the celebration of big fish and their stories (the stories matter, as this one shows) around Chicago fishing, runs Wednesdays in the paper Sun-Times. The online posting here at https://chicago.suntimes.com/outdoors goes up at varied days of the week, depending on what is going on the wide world of the outdoors.

To make submissions, email (BowmanOutside@gmail.com) or contact me on Facebook (Dale Bowman), Twitter (@BowmanOutside) or Instagram (@BowmanOutside).