Warmer Water Crappie in shallow lakes

Baron

Baron

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I've been fishing lakes to 6' deep (bottom) with soft hackle flies and Clouser Deep Minnows. I do okay but now that the Crappy are off their nests and back out all over the lake I'm not connecting like I think I should be. Either I'm in the wrong place or they just don't like my offerings.I saw somewhere recently that someone is enjoying the use of Mudler Minnow and am wondering, since they're another level up in tying, if they're worth the extra tying time.
Any advice for Crappie would be appreciated.
 
R

RLeep2

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Crappie are not selective fish, so it probably has bupkis to do with what fly you are fishing so long as it is even semi-remotely suggestive of something they might want to eat and not a fuchsia and blue wooly worm or some such. You can go ahead and learn to tie a Muddler if you like, but it isn't necessary to catch any crappie I've ever seen. Catching crappie is 70% about finding them, 25% about how you work your fly and (maybe, at most) 5% about fly pattern.

Fish simple wooly worms, chenille & hackle wet flies and buggers in white, yellow and chartreuse. A yellow/black chenille body of twisted chenille is also really good for any of these fly types. Fish them sloooow, pausing for a moment here and there to let the fly drop. If you're around any crappie, they'll find the fly. But that's the rub, you have find them.

One upside about learning to tie a Muddler of course is that if you do master it, you can join the 80% of the rest of us who have never caught a fish on one...:)
 
jifigz

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The lake has to be deeper than 6 feet deep. If you are fishing water that is 6 feet deep and not finding crappies, that's because they are done with their deed and have moved back into deeper water.

Crappies spend the majority of their lives in deeper water of lakes. Fly fishing for them is fun, but it is easier and more productive using spinning equipment.

What lake are you fishing? Also, if you want to continue to catch panfish on the fly, why not just stay shallow and concentrate on the bluegill that should be moving into the shallows next?
 
Baron

Baron

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RLeap2 tells a funny, lol. I have caught bass on them. I don't want to catch bass on anything. Furthermore I don't care for sculpted deer hair.
Yesterday on my way back to the dock I caught three crappy by trolling a white/pink wooly worm style. This also produced many nice gills, but I was trolling. Its hard to take credit for something I would rather earn by cast and retrieve.
I catch them on pink and occasionally olive over white Clouser. perhaps I should tie them some color combo's such as you mention above. Thanks for the suggestion.
Jifigz, Lake Gouldsboro is only 6' deep and most of it is 2-4'. Sort of an anomaly for how big it is. if the wind isn't blowing and the sun is overhead you can see the bottom through th tea colored water right down to 6'. So the Crappy are of their nests now and back in general circulation. I guess I should troll for them until I find them, drop a marker and fish them manually until they move on. I was taking allot of Bluegill but started noticing all the black spot and that grosses me out. I'd like to get 40-50 panfish into the freezer before dead summer. Then I'll chase Pickerel.
At gouldsboro the Gills are on the nests now and will be for another couple weeks and many bass are on as well.
Fly-Swatter showed me the Kreelix and its ok. I think its more of a Sept fly. If you folks think of anything else let me know
 
tomgamber

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if you wanna catch crappie you gotta be fishing anything that looks like a minnow about 1-2" long. I've caught crappie on lots of flies but that's basically what they eat and not much else.
 
Dave_W

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They (black crappies) were thick in some shoreline weeds on a favorite lake of mine that I hit on the way back from the jam yesterday. Not much in size, but good numbers.
 
Skeet6

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In my lake they suspend in some rocks off shore about 50', maybe 8' deep. There are a few downed trees on the shoreline that will each hold a half dozen each trip out. Any streamers (zonkers, clousers, sparkle minnows, etc) from 2-4 inches in chartreuse or gold/silver will kill 'em. Heck, one even nailed a large jointed Jitterbug last summer after dark while I had a cocktail with a baitcasting rig one evening.
Mike B
 

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Baron

Baron

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Skeet6 mentioned: "(zonkers, clousers, sparkle minnows, etc)"
I rarely catch Crappy in the shallows. And I fish every stump and bump along the shoreline. I do drag off allot of nice gill in these locations. I seem to catch more Crappie in the deepest waters (6' is all there is).
I'll try mixing it up more by color and type until I connect.
 

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JerryC

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Between the four of us, we didn't catch a single crappie on Shohola last week. They're not the primary target for three of us. The guy I fished with used worms and minnows and didn't pick any up. Boats were catching them but they were either drifting or trolling in the middle of the lake.
Shohola is supposed to be no more than 8 feet deep, but there are deeper holes scattered around the lake. I'd be willing to bet the same is true for Gouldsboro.
 
Baron

Baron

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I found them finally. They were on the bottom of 6' deep, middle lake. I have a buddy that only trolls and he tells me where he gets them the most. They seem to be scattered.
 
M

Mike

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Trolling with streamers on shallow Pocono lakes works well for bluegills and crappies. Like anything else, time of day can still be important.
 
Baron

Baron

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Yes Mike I agree now. These shallow lakes must warm straight through the water profile whereas a fish in Nockamixon can escape to deeper water when it warms up the fish in these shallow lakes have nowhere to go. Food seems plentiful and I wonder if the well fed fish don't just slow their matabolisms and rest during hot weather since there is no other place to escape.
 
M

Mike

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Black crappie largely stop feeding at temps over 74 deg and whites stop at temps over 77 deg. An exception of a degree or two is when forage fish are extremely abundant, so much so that it takes little energy to capture them.
 
Baron

Baron

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Most helpful Mike. That is why then that crappie are almost not caught all summer in Gouldsboro and Tobyhanna. All Crappie and most keeper size Perch are tough to catch whereas the gills dominate the summer panfish catches. I guess I oilfield move to deeper lakes but as a fly fisherman the above lakes are awesome.
 
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