How To Jig For Crappie (Just for Fishing)

If you’ve ever fished for crappie, you’re probably familiar with the types of lures that work best for this species. Jigs and minnows are popular baits for crappies, and if you master the art of jigging, you will be able to catch a large number of them much sooner than you might expect. This comprehensive guide will teach you how to jig for crappie and improve your chances of catching this type of fish.

Reelfoot Lake Crappie Fishing - FISHING - Rambling Angler Outdoors

Why are jigs so good for catching crappie?

There are a plethora of different lures and baits available on the market, so the first question that comes to mind is probably why jigs are held in such high regard by anglers when it comes to this particular species. Jigs can attract crappie because of the jerky movements they can create in the water, which is the shortest answer.

It’s easy to see the significant differences between jigs and spinnerbaits when you compare them side by side. Spinnerbaits only move horizontally, which does not excite crappie in the same way that other baits would. This is the type of fish that requires you to offer them something in exchange for their attention, and jigs are simply superior.

When it comes to jigging for crappie, it is critical to know what kind of equipment to bring with you so that you are well prepared. The equipment you’ll need will be demonstrated in the following sections, beginning with rod and line and progressing to the color schemes for your jigs. Other considerations, as well as clever tips to help you become more successful when jigging for crappie, will be discussed in the following sections.

Get the proper gear

It is essential that you understand what crappie want, but it is equally important to grab the necessary gear and never leave home unprepared. How to fish a crappie jig solutions are offered, many times, by seasoned anglers, but, if you don’t have anyone in your circle of friends who are already accustomed with jigging, you may use the following advice.

  •    The rod

Let’s start with the rod. You may know this one, but it is nothing wrong with repeating this recommendation: pick a long rod when you go fishing for crappie. When it comes to this fish species, you have to think about depth control. A short rod will never give you the kind of control you require for playing right this kind of fish.

A long rod – think along the terms of an 8-10 foot rod – will let you determine the depth and also it will help you set the hook quickly when a fish bites. If you need more in-depth advice, here is something more: if you don’t think it is too daunting to start using a baistcaster reel, this is the ideal choice.

However, you need to bear in mind that using this type of reel requires quite a lot of practice. If you’re in this for the long run, maybe it serves to take up this kind of fishing style.

  •    Jig colors

There is quite a little science developed by passionate anglers regarding what jig colors you should use when fishing crappie. You may even find the best crappie jig colors guide, as described by these enthusiasts. We are here to help you with some quick information on the matter.

There are a few things you may want to take into consideration. For instance, crappies are not fond of only one color or another. They can be a little picky and unpredictable, which is why you need to be open to making all kinds of fine-tuning and adjustments until you get the color right.

Transparent colors are preferred when fishing in clear waters. The explanation is rather straightforward. The fish need to see the bait, to jump on it. There is no point in using toned down colors in muddy waters, for that reason. Crappies will just overlook your carefully picked jigs, and you may be left wondering what didn’t work.

Chartreuse jigs are often preferred, but one cannot say that they are the only ones that work. Trying creating a contrast that will draw the attention of the fish. And here is another piece of advice: keep all the colors you bought nearby, as you might need them. Crappies can change their mind all the time, so it serves to try something different when you notice that they are no longer biting.

  •    The jig head

We will not speak a lot of time about what line to pick since the only reliable advice that can be given is that crappie can be fished with a heavy line. The most important advantage is that you will not have to deal with line breaks on a regular basis.

However, we need to focus a bit on the jig head. The ideal weight sworn by seasoned anglers is 1/8 ounces, and it is preferable that the jig head has a bright color compared to the rest. You can also use ¼-ounce jog heads, as these seem to be pretty successful, as well.

Squid Buster jig head unrigged - Ocean-Angler

A few actionable recommendations for jigging for crappie

Earlier, we talked a lot about what kind of gear you should get to make sure that crappies will bite in huge numbers. But, of course, the right equipment is just part of the solution. You also need to learn a few things that will help you fish like a professional.

Learn about where crappies hide

Fishing is part experience, part intuition, but you can also rely on a few scientific facts. Crappies have specific patterns of behavior, just like any other fish species, and you must become knowledgeable of their habits if you want to get successful at catching crappie.

The rule of thumb is that you need to pay close attention to certain factors. Crappies, for instance, love hiding behind all kinds of structures, and they don’t like swimming in the current. If the waters are fast and you notice that the clear waters seem scarce in fish, this is the approach you need to appeal to.

When the currents are strong, you can always count on finding plenty of crappies hidden behind all sorts of structures, where they can eat without any disturbance. That makes fishing crappie a bit more exciting than you might expect. You will feel like a true explorer as you try to identify the exact location when fish come to eat.

In case you are not very good at guessing, or you don’t want to waste any time trying to figure out behavior patterns in fish, there is also another thing you can do, and that is to ask other fishers in the area about the best places to find crappie. You may even gain some more interesting knowledge on what else you can do to get more crappies to bite.

Things to know about water depth

If there is one thing that all fishermen learn while practicing their favorite pastime is that different species of fish prefer varying water depth. The schools of fish will move through the water at their preferred depth, and you need to develop quite a knack for determining this aspect. A fish finder could help you, but, if you don’t have such a tool at your disposal, you will have to rely on other things.

One way to do that is to be patient, and try different water depths until you catch something. That will tell you what water depth are the fish suspended in. The chances are that the fish you caught was not alone, and there is an entire school waiting to bite on your jigs.

As a general rule, most fish prefer to stay in water at a depth of 10 to 15 feet. This is where you will find most species, so it is a good bet. Here is also a little something you may want to know about crappie, as a species.

These fish don’t have great vision, which means that they are not very good at seeing the bait. What you can do, to increase your chances, is to place the bait in such a way that the crappie will see it. The upward direction is the most indicated, and this is what you can do to make the fish bite more.

Crappie is not a very difficult fish to catch by definition, but that doesn’t mean that you cannot do various things to maximize your chances of success. Finding the ideal water depth so you can know how and where to cast your line is one of these aspects.

How to drop your jig

Now you are well armed with everything you need. You have all the equipment required, and you know where you can find crappie, depending on location and water depth. All you have to learn more is how to drop your jig properly.

When you drop the jig, the most important thing is to start tapping it. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, jigs have the advantage of moving vertically in the water, and those jerky actions that can draw the attention of the crappies swimming in the water body.

Crappies, as said before, don’t have the best eyesight in the underwater world. That means that you need to lend the fish a helping hand so they can see the bait. When you tap on the jig, and you make it move up and down, the lure will create a natural shade of the water. That will let the fish know that there is prey nearby.

While you may feel like crappie fishing is a tad difficult from this point of view, knowing its behavior will help you catch plenty of these specimens. All you need to do is to make sure that you don’t tap the jig too brusquely. The fish will run away if the actions of the jig are too frantic.

Here is another strategy that you may employ. When you drop the jig, let it sit still for several seconds. Do you still remember the information supplied earlier on jig colors, and crappies’ preferences for specific baits? Just the same thing applies to the strategy for dropping the jig you have to use.

Sometimes, crappie prefers moving baits, and that is when you need to tap the jig. But, other times, slower targets are preferable, and keeping the jig still will be much more successful. Keep these tips and tricks in mind, as you might find them useful when you go fishing for other species of fish, as well.

Fishing Method: Jig Sabiki - Small Fish to Fish Eaters! - Japan Fishing and Tackle News

Behavior during spawn time

Crappie is known as an aggressive fish when it’s spawn time. Fishermen know that the fish will be hungry during this time, and they consider this the most appropriate moment for crappie fishing. Remember to hang out your lures in deep water, so that crappies can see them. This way, you will entice the fish to bite more.

Outside the spawning season, crappie is more likely to swim away from protective structures. However, it may not be as hungry as during spawn, so there are advantages and disadvantages to consider for each of these periods of time.

In brief

It is possible that novice anglers will find jigging for crappie to be a difficult task, but it is not impossible to learn with the proper knowledge and practice. Because of the recommendations above, you will become more proficient at crappie fishing and will be able to bring home an even larger haul of crappie from your trip.

Don’t forget that choosing the appropriate type of fishing equipment is critical to catching crappie. Finding the right colors for your jigs is extremely important when selecting them. In addition to taking certain factors into consideration, such as location and depth of the water, you must also make some preliminary arrangements..

Everything, from the type of rod you use to the line and jig head you use, must be carefully selected in order to maximize your chances of success. Crappies, like many other fish species, are sensitive to loud noises, and you should be aware of this fact when fishing for these fish.

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