A Beginner’s Guide on How to Catch a Crappie?

How to Catch a Crappie

Catching a crappie is not really an easy thing to do, but with my years of experience, I would like to share some of the tips and tricks on how to catch a crappie. But before that, you should know a little bit about the crappies and their habitat.

Native to North America, crappie is the species of fish which lives in the freshwater sources. The water should be a little acidic. Moreover, they like to feed on aquatic insects when they reach their adulthood while the younger one’s prey on microscopic species.

Crappies usually move in groups. Also, it is very common for them to move with other species of pan fish. Moreover, crappie usually comes to the surface at midnight in order to feed. The rest of the day, they like to hide in deep water under any fallen structures that make a good hiding place. So, catching them at night is easier than in the morning when the sun is at its peak.

This scenario can change during the spawning season when they come to the shore where the water is shallow, making them an easy target for the fishermen.

Where to Find Them?

  • While finding a crappie, always look for the clear water streams where the chances of finding them are relatively high. The species might be native to North America, but it is spread all across the world in large numbers.
  • You can find them under fallen trees or seaweeds. This is something that can be used as an advantage.

What Equipments to Use?

  • Use the right fishing rod and the reel. This might sound a little obvious, but trust me, A good quality rod can go a long way. For fishing a crappie, an old-fashioned rod can be used. You don’t have to use the heavy rods for crappie catching as a lightweight can do the work easily.
  • For catching a crappie, jigs are best. Don’t limit yourself to just one jig as you’ll be needing a lot more than that for catching a crappie. A variety of jigs can make the work whole lot easier because of the picky nature of the crappies. But make sure that the size of the jigs is small because crappies have small mouths so biting on a small jig is much easier.
  • Last but not the least is the bait. You should know that you can use jigs as a bait because some of them come in shapes that are specially designed to look like a bait to attract the crappie. Moreover, try to use small freshwater creatures as a bait. These creatures work as a live bait and very easily attract the crappie fish.

How to Catch Crappie

Now let’s come to the main point. The question that everybody asks is how to catch them. After you know where to look for them and what equipment to use, it is time to catch the crappie. The points mentioned below are some of the most popular ways to catch a crappie.

  • Use jigs as a fake bait. There are some jigs that look like bait and can become a fake bait in order to catch a crappie. A small jig can be used in order to do the same. Since small jigs shaped like minnows attract the crappie, this makes it one of the most effective ways of catching crappie.
  • Always keep the line tight. Yes, you heard that right. Keeping the line tight also contributed to catching a crappie. Due to soft lips of the fish, they can be torn easily and shake the whole hook. This can only happen if the line is not tight enough. So, keeping the line tight becomes a necessity here in order to catch them.
  • This one needs a little effort. All you have to do is put some minnows in a glass jar and tie the jar with a rope. Now sink the jar in the water a little deeper and use flashlights over the jar so that it can be easily seen as this has to be done during night for better result. Now with the jar, hang your bait. So, if a crappie will come to attack at the school of minnows, it will end up attacking the bait one way or another making it easy for you to catch it. Make sure that you poke some holes in the lid of the glass jar.
  • It is all about the knot. While catching a crappie with the help of a jig, always make sure that the knot you are using is a loop knot. The loop knot makes the movement of the jig inside the water easier when it is cast to catch the fish. Moreover, it also gives the crappie a movement that attracts it.
  • Always know the depths you have to reach in order to catch a crappie. Usually, on a regular winter season, they are found at a depth of around 6 feet, which can change as the temperature starts to increase. Once the summer comes, these fishes move deeper into the water in order to survive. This way you know where to find them and how to catch them and what method to use.
  • Try to reel slowly. These fishes tend to play around the bait before swallowing it. Once it swallows the bait, it is the time to pull up slowly and take the fish out of the water.
  • Another thing that you have to know is that always keep your hook small. As we told before that the mouth of these fishes is small due to which you have to take a small bite, but many people forget about the hooks and use the big ones and then they start to think why they failed. They should know that a small hook is as important as a small bait so try to keep it small.
  • There is actually no such thing as tricks. All you have to do is be patient and be smart when it comes to catching them.

Learn more in the following video:

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