Channels can be found in open water, but they prefer thick cover. If you’re not losing tackle, you’re not far enough into the cover. Aquatic vegetation like cattails or lily pads should never be passed up. Target the edges and then look for open pockets inside of them. They’re havens for insects and sources of food, and fish will stack into these areas by the hundreds. Have patience, take your time, and cover the areas well—inches can make the difference. Sight-fishing might be a foreign concept to many catfish anglers, but watching for channel catfish in the shallows is one of the simplest forms of locating big fish in warmer weather.