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crappie live baits

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crappies have some amazing names that local fisherman have given them over the years such as calico crappie, speckled perch, speckled bass, white perch, pole crappies, strawberry bass, and papermouths. When the water temperature starts to warm slightly above more the 50 degrees farenheight it is time to get your crappie live baits and other crappie baits ready for the upcoming spring season of crappie fishing.

Crappies will start their annual migration from their coldwater locations to key new foraging locations. In the north this early spring period will sart right after ice out and actually the temperature of the water will be in the high 30’s. and the month of the year normally will be sometime in March to Early April. In the south, pole crappies move from deep water when the temperature rises above 40 degrees to coves, and back ends of creeks, about the end of February to the end of march.

During this early spring period strawberry bass are hungry and ready to feed. Remember though the water is still cold so you need to work your crappie baits slowly. Some very good crappie live baits to use are crappie minnows, shiners, small creek chubs, small gizzard shad, small threadfin shad, and small crayfish. You can catch crappie at this time a year in the southern regions using crappie jigs and plastics or crappie jig, live bait combinations in broad feed creeks, where the water warms faster. Channel bends with stumps will often hold crappies at this time of year also.

Calico Bass in large lakes and reservoirs will stage and suspend over deep water 20 to 40 feet deep usually just beyond the first drop of leading into the shallow zones they will be using for their annual spawn. In most reservoirs the papermouths will normally stage in creek arms so if you are going to be bait fishing for crappie in the early spring period you will want to use large crappie jigs to do your crappie fishing using large crappie minnows and shiners.

In small lakes and ponds pole crappies will suspend over the deepest holes waiting to go to shallow water for the annual spawn. So an ideal way to catch crappie in these waters is by using a slip bobber crappie fishing rig  with a crappie jig head tipped with large crappie minnows and shiners. Also small crayfish will work. You will need to adjust your depth until you start catching crappie. The reason you want to use larger crappie live baits at this time of year is because you need to math the natural forage that the strawberry bass is feeding on at this time of year. The papermouths are feeding on what was left of the natural bait fish from
the previous year because the bait fish have not spawned yet so there will be no fry at this time of year.

I want to thank you for reading my article about Crappie Fishing. We wish you the best of luck on your next fishing trip!

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