How Deep Should You Fish for Crappies?

An Image of a Black Crappie

(Image Credit – WBeckon)

If you are targeting crappies for fishing, you must understand their behaviour. Fishermen have different opinions when it comes to crappies and the best depth of water to fish for them –  but a little understanding of the species will help make the decision easier.

The best depth to fish for crappies is typically between 10 and 35 feet, but can vary depending on a lot of factors.

One of the determining factors of the right fishing depth is the zone where you are fishing.

Other factors include the weather conditions, the seasons, and the time of the day when you are fishing. For instance, if you are fishing during the day, it is not the same as when you are doing it in the evening. Also, fishing in the ice-cold water during winter is not the same as during summer.

Therefore you need to put into consideration all those factors before you determine the right depth for you to fish crappies. Also, lake water temperature and the clarity of the water are determining factors as well.

The fishing method you are using will determine how easy it is for you to catch the crappies. Electronic fishing using sonar and GPS, for example, is a great way to help you locate your crappies and the ideal depth for crappie fishing.

Understanding Crappie Behaviour

Crappies are species of fish mostly found in the North Part of America. They are in two different species – white crappie and black crappies.

These species are freshwater fish and most loved by most anglers for game fishing. They live in moderately acidic and highly vegetated waters. Crappies are also schooling fish that love staying even with other types of fish. Crappies also love living under structures that are in the water, like fallen trees, weed bends, or any other compositions that are found in water.

Another thing that is important to know about this type of fish is how they behave during different times of the day. During the day the fish like staying underwater but they come up to the shore during dusk or dawn for feeding. Also during spawning, the species likes staying in shallow waters and you can find them in large numbers.

Another good thing about crappies is that they do not hibernate during winter and thus are easy prey for ice fishing.

Generally, this kind of fish stays in deep waters with a depth of about three to six feet with a tendency of going deeper during summer.

During summer and winter, the crappies form schools and mostly stay at a depth between 10- 35 feet of water. If you want to catch these species during these seasons look for them near old river channels or at the lake basin. If you are dealing with fish in reservoirs, you will find the fish concentrating in submerged timber near channel breaks or humps.

What is the Best Time to Catch Crappie in Each Season?

Spring

At the onset of spring, the water begins to warm and the days lengthen and during this time the crappies tend to rise in the water. They move to shallow areas in search of prey. At this time, it is also their time to spawn and that makes them move even to shallower waters. By the time the water reaches a temperature of 50 and 60 degrees, expect more fish to get to their spawn. At the same time, the fish is hungrier after staying in winter without food. Also, just before dawn when the waters begin warming up, it is an ideal time to look for your crappies.

Summer

As much as it may be tough on the surface of the water during summer, it is tough underneath the surface as well. The temperature near the surface may be too much for the crappies pushing them into the lower parts of the water. During the summer heat, you should not look for the crappies on the shallow waters. The temperatures will not allow them to stay on the surface. During summer it is better to plan your fishing at pre-dawn. It will help you if you look for crappies before the daybreak.

Fall

As the water temperatures begin to fall, crappies will move to the deeper water clustering in big schools. During this time they are looking for food to eat enough to take them through the winter. It is one of the best times to look for crappies. Pre-dawn fishing is the best time during this season.

When you understand everything about crappies and their behavior during different seasons, you can be sure of a huge catch all the time. It is important for you to ask yourself every time you go fishing, how deep should I fish for crappies today. The information given here should prepare you to look for crappies during different seasons and different times.

Winter

During the cold season, there is a high possibility of the crappies leaving the shallow water to the deep waters. They mostly retreat to timber found along the water channels or under the water. When the cold persists the crappies retreat further to the deeper waters but not when the water is frozen. If you are to catch fish at this time you have to prepare for deep water fishing. However, if the water freezes and becomes ice, the species comes up again to the shallow waters. If you are fond of ice fishing, you will get your crappies in the shallow waters.

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on email
Email
Share on print
Print

CHECK OUT OUR OTHER POSTS:

What is Walk-Up Camping?

Walk up camping is the phrase given to when people decide to simply ‘walk up’ to a campsite without booking to see if they can find a space to camp. The whole idea is to take a calculated risk, meaning there may or may not be any space for you or your family to camp

Read More »
A bush cricket on a wall

How to Keep Crickets Alive for Fishing

If you are a reptile owner you must have used crickets as a food source for your animals. Crickets are rich in proteins and calcium which is why they are the best thing you can feed your reptiles. Besides being the best reptile food, crickets make for great bait when you go fishing. As it

Read More »

Best Buck Knife 2021

If you are looking for a quality knife, you’ve probably considered a buck knife. Great for everyday carry, these foldable hunting knives are useful for more than just skinning deer. Their convenience and versatility make them handy tool even when you aren’t out hunting in the field. Choosing a quality, dependable buck knife can seem

Read More »
A fire with wooden logs burning

How Much Firewood Do I Need for Camping?

Whether you are new to camping or are a seasoned camper, sitting around a campfire makes for the best camping experience. A camping fire helps keep you warm during the night and you can also use it to prepare your meals. As such, you’ve probably asked yourself the question ‘How much firewood do I need

Read More »

10 Best Bass Lures 2021

Any keen fisherman or woman will have more than a few stories about their greatest catch, as well as about the one that got away. However, they are also likely to be able provide a certain amount of advice about how to improve your success rate when fishing. Those anglers that have a preference for

Read More »

10 Best Fishing Sunglasses 2021

Poles – check. Net – check. Bait – check. Boat – check. You’ve gone through your fishing trip checklist and find that you have everything you need. You hop in your vehicle and turn the engine on, turn the music up and whip out your sunglasses. Unfortunately, you forgot that you dropped the glasses on

Read More »