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Monday, 29 February 2016 19:17

Spring Crappie Fishing

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Crappie get targeted often during the ice fishing season in Minnesota and then get overlooked during the open water months. Minnesota is home to both species of Crappie (White and Black) but the Black Crappie is more commonly found here. My favorite time to fish for big Crappie is a month or so after the ice out. As the ice leaves the lakes, the water temperature will slowly begin to rise. Typically when the water temperature reaches 50 degrees Fahrenheit it triggers the Crappie to start moving shallower into their staging areas which will be in close proximity to their spawning grounds.

The Crappie spawn typically takes place in 2 to 6 feet of water, in areas with dark/soft bottoms and often around structure like pencil reeds, timber, emergent vegetation, etc. The males will be the first ones to push up shallow and will start assembling the nest. Once the females find the nest to their liking they will move up, lay their eggs and move out in a short amount of time. The males will then stay near the nest for a week or more to feed and protect the fry.

Crappie tend to be very aggressive and feeding heavily during pre and post spawning activities. Spawning will often take place on the warmest bay of the lake so make sure to check the Northern shoreline as it receives the most sun during the Spring. Understanding a bit more about the Crappie spawn, as well as where they will be holding before, during and after the spawn will help your outings become more successful this Spring. 

Here is a video from last season of me catching post spawn Crappies in shallow water:

Read 1161 times Last modified on Tuesday, 01 March 2016 10:28

Mitch Bradshaw

Mitch Bradshaw has been a kayak angler since 2011. He calls the beautiful state of Minnesota home and during the non-winter months he often has trouble deciding which of the 10,000 lakes he should drop his kayak into. He spends most of his time chasing Largemouth Bass but he also has a passion for trying new techniques and targeting new species.

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