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Spring Kansas Crappie

Spring Kanas Crappie FishingOne of the most anticipated angling opportunities in Kansas is the spring crappie spawning period, usually from late April through May. The cool spring of 2011 may have delayed this year’s run, but warmer weather is in the forecast, and crappie are on the move. Reports from many reservoirs have crappie staging in water 15 to 20 feet deep, but once the water warms, anglers can expect to catch crappie as they move close to shore, where they spawn near brush piles and rocky shoreline along dams. This concentrates the fish and makes great fishing for boaters and shore anglers.

Crappie move to shallow areas when water temperatures reach the mid-50s and wait to spawn at water temperatures of 60-65 degrees. Depending on water clarity, they may spawn as shallow as 2 feet deep and are most active at dawn and dusk, when light levels are low. While brush and rocky shorelines are ideal, any visible structure may harbor spawning <a href=”http://www.ifished.com/fish/crappie-id”>crappie</a>.

Live minnows are good crappie bait, especially during cool spells when fish are less active. Hook the minnow just under the dorsal fin to keep it lively. Use a bobber to set depth, and keep a minnow near structure where the fish are hiding. When crappie are most active, small, colorful jigs can be even more productive. Small spoons, spinners, or crankbaits are effective, as well. For the avid fly fisherman, crappie present a welcome challenge and bite well on a variety of streamer flies.

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