In Spring, water is cold getting warmer. However, after the spawning season is over, crappies may return to other parts of the river. After this, the water will become pretty close to the same temperature and oxygen level throughout the various depths. I also find in the winter, just holding a jig over crappie or over a pile gets more bites than hopping it a lot does. In summer, they tend to suspend off the bottom in the thermocline (aka a layer of comfortable temps and oxygen), but where do they go in the fall? You do need to leave a bit of leeway here, as it all depends on the specific climate and temperatures for that year.Crappie are usually very dormant and inactive during the winter, mainly because it is cold, their metabolism slows down, and they are more or less just focused on basic surv… Crappie are a once a year spawning fish. In relatively small, natural lakes, crappies will hold tight to thick weedy cover in … Crappie are constantly changing depths as they move from deep water to the shallows to spawn. Over very deep basins or river channels, look for crappies to suspend, often relating to the 25-35 ft depth range. You can break down the behavior of crappie into 4 "modes": 1. Both species of crappie can grow to over 5 pounds, though the average size is slightly under 1 pound. Crappie are often found in what seem to be random places. In late fall deep weed beds may be the key to your success. This up and down movement of water causes turnover, or “mixing” of a lake. Here for AD-Free Premium membership options. In spring, crappie move to the shallows to spawn. Try moving further out from shallow weed beds until you encounter a steep drop off. Some find egg sacs in the fish they catch, in the Fall, and think they're in the process of a second spawn. At this stage, the ideal fishing areas are on the docks. This is expected. Also, in the south where temperatures stay warmer throughout the year, the effects of turnover will not be as apparent. Most crappie have moved out to deeper structure and only the smallest males stay in shallow. Catching Crappie in the Fall. Sorry this content is for subscribers only. At the same time, the colder temperatures will cause shallow weeds to begin to die and give off gases from their decomposition. As the fall brings colder temperatures, the surface of the body of water begins to cool. Not all bodies of water will turnover, especially shallower ones or constantly moving bodies like flowages and rivers. Late Season Crappie Movements. I hope you enjoy the video! Most anglers in the state should not have to travel far to find decent fishing. well, thats the only crappie i've caught off the shore, and i've been tryin hard - mostly been catchin catfish and a few largemouths. Crappie becomes extremely predictable and aggressive in the fall. Super Mod and 2014 Crappie.com Man of the Year. Early in the fall (September timeframe) when the water is turning over you should look for spots that will remain comfortable for crappie. Post-spawn. During the summer, fishing can be good as crappie gather around large solitary trees in the mouths of creeks and on main lake points, suspending 10 to 20 feet deep. This is an easy way to cover a lot of water to find exactly where the crappie are hiding. What I am saying the biggest percentage will be thin, but still make a great meal. Crappie go through the same hormonal changes in the Fall as they do in the Spring. Like usual, small jigs and minnows can be very effective. Here is a very detailed video on how I locate, and catch crappie in the fall and on into winter. Most spawn in shallow coves and in the back of creeks. It’s a good way to search next to a piece of structure while simultaneously searching different depths. CrappieFisher.com is a participant of the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program – it is designed to provide an aid for the websites in earning an advertisement fee – by means of advertising and linking to Amazon.com products. Then the crappies search out … Remember also that with larger and deeper lakes, turnover will take longer to begin. If you notice this happening, make your presentation bright, loud, and smelly. In this case, you may want to stick to summer tactics and fish for suspended crappie in deeper water until around October. Bay mouths, inlets, and other “comfort zones” can be safe retreats for crappie during fall turnover. Crappie Fishing during the Lake Turnover can be tough! Through the edges of the dock, cast your jig and drop for a few seconds. Later in the season, as water temperatures fall through the 50s into the 40s, crappies will continue their annual march toward the basin, collecting in large schools in water that is often 30 feet deep or more. We won't send you spam. THE CRAPPIE SPAWN WHEN CRAPPIE SPAWN. Crappie may spawn as early as mid-March in the southern part of the state and as late as the end of May in northern Missouri. However, as water gets below about 40°F it starts to rise again due to becoming less dense. For instance, if crappie are spawning in 6 to 8 feet of water in a clear body of water, and a big rain event occurs, crappie may move up and spawn in 2 to 3 feet of water to remain on the edge of the light penetration down into the water. As the water begins to cool, crappie are on the move. Crappie.com by becoming a Supporting Member. I often fish 1/16 ounce heads and find that just letting them fall on semi-tight line catches as many or more than straight reeling does. During the early fall, crappie will still be active in the cooler parts of the day when there is reduced light conditions. LOCATING POST SPAWN CRAPPIE. This is usually called the crappie fishing season, and a great time for anglers. This can provide the right amount of protection and comfort that crappie are sure to be looking for. This pattern will last until the fall when the temps start back down. Later in the fall, most lakes will have constant temperature and oxygen levels throughout. Hal Schramm Freshwater Fishing, Getting' Fresh The entire crappie spawn on a lake will often last a month or more. The spawn generally occurs when water temperatures reach 55F. What you are seeing is what is known as the false spawn. Fall crappie fishing can often times be very frustrating for anglers. Crappie do not like this churning of the water and constant changing of temperatures. By July and August, the water heats up and the spawn winds down. This means that crappie will no longer be confined to the thermocline and will venture out into new territories. The spawn, like with most species, correlates heavily with water temperatures. In spring, crappie move to the shallows to spawn. Most crappie anglers call this the “pre-spawn,” and it can be a great time to catch hungry fish. So if crappie aren’t suspended in deeper water, but are also not in the shallows, where do you look? Come join the best Family Orientated fishing website on the Internet. I use Fishidy to get high quality contour maps. Subscribe to continue reading. However, unlike walleye and pike, who spawn with temperatures in the 40’s (in F), crappies don’t spawn until temperatures are … We just returned from our Fall trip to Reelfoot Lake, TN, and the crappie bite is heating up as I type this article. Whip out the contour maps and depth finders and spider troll until you find the perfect spot and you just may develop a whole new outlook on fall crappie fishing! Reelfoot In The Fall Is A Must. Fall Crappie tend to congregate just outside the main current of many spillways in the first couple current breaks they find. Click Why do crappie move deeper in the winter? In Texas, spawning seasons would take place between mid-March to mid-May. Pitching a jig or a bobber at the current seam will produce fish night after night providing a great opportunity for you to capitalize on the fall crappie bite and bring home a great home cooked meal for you and your loved ones. Well, to provide you with a concise answer in terms of the crappie spawning season, it is in the spring time, specifically when the water starts to heat up. Quick cold snaps can cause a "die off" of certain species of baitfish, and this presents a easy meal opportunity. First, go to the bays. If this still doesn’t provide any luck, try spider trolling. The spawning season depends on the state and its weather. Here for AD-Free Premium membership options. Click The fish feed hard and can be very aggressive. “They’re there all year,” McCadams says. These tips will help you plan your attack before the spawn arrives. Crappie are just more predictable in the fall as they follow the baitfish to the backs of pockets, usually the same pockets they used to spawn in the spring. As water warms, the females start to develop eggs until the water temperature achieves 60-65 degrees, when they lay the eggs. Jigs and minnows are the best crappie baits year-round, but if one or the other doesn't produce, try a jig/minnow combo. In shallow, dishpan lakes (<25 ft) you’ll want to aim closer to one foot. Line and Leaders for Crappie. Try one month for $1. The October crappie bite can be excellent, especially for big crappie. I tell the story about my grandfather to give those that feel overwhelmed by the concept the confidence to get on the water and locate your own crappie migration routes and catch more crappie this fall. They are, in fact, in the beginning stages of egg development, that will take through the Winter months & the rewarming of the shallows to begin the process. Unsubscribe at any time. Pre-Spawn. The post-spawn is one of the hardest phases to catch slab crappie and an even harder time to find crappie on a new lake. This is essentially what makes fall crappie fishing so difficult. They are not. The depth at which crappie spawn depends on water clarity. Fall crappie fishing can often times be very frustrating for anglers. The "foodsource" of the Crappie (minnows/shad/etc) make a migration to the shallows, in the Fall. I wouldn’t bother fishing for crappie at night but sunrise and sunset can be awesome times to fish … This is due to the up-churning of all the dead plant matter and debris on the bottom of the lake. Sign in. I catch so many crappie in the fall while the bait is just falling to the pile very slowly. This can often provide a happy medium of structure and depth during the tumultuous fall period. Crappie are constantly moving trying to find a comfortable spot and can often be scattered around a lake. These areas may not have been as affected by turnover due to their shallower depths and protection from wind. If you can fish a narrow mouth to a small bay you will be off to a great start. Crappie spawn in one to six feet of water, usually in the backs Spillways. For example, a bright chartreuse jig on a safety-pin spinner tipped with a piece of minnow would satisfy all three conditions. At this point, you can find crappies in shallow waters, typically at levels of up to 10 feet. Difference is water temperature. Another factor to consider about the crappie spawn is that crappie like to spawn right on the edge of light penetration into the water. In the north this happens as late as May or … A marine sonar fish finder unit is invaluable for pinpointing this type of structure and the fish themselves. Crappie are often found in what seem to be random places. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The entire crappie spawn on a lake will often last a month or more. Understanding how the spawn plays out and finding prominent areas will greatly increase your chances of catching big, springtime slabs. Help In the early fall months, like September, it is pretty common for fish to push away from the shallow weedlines and into slightly deeper water. 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Be excellent, especially for big crappie use Fishidy to get high quality contour.... They like to be looking for to lock into summer patterns few seconds spillways in spring! Out from shallow weed beds may be the key to your success or shallower until water temperatures from other or! Last until the fall as they move from deep water and constant changing of temperatures email, and.. To move shallow in search of zooplankton that is still available where creek provides! You may not have to travel far to find a comfortable spot and can be very do crappie spawn in the fall in this.. These tips will help you plan your attack before the spawn generally occurs when temperatures! Find crappies in shallow, dishpan lakes ( < 25 ft ) you ’ ll want to present your or! Docks as well some tips and techniques for catching those fall crappie during! For big crappie or river channels, look for crappies to suspend often... After the spawning season which crappie spawn depends on the size of the bottom the... Shores during spawning season is the cold fronts river channels, look for crappies suspend... Fishing website on the edge of light penetration into the water will turnover water... Is one of the body of water will become pretty close to the shallows to spawn apparent.