Your Color Guide to Crappie Jigs
One of the most popular ways to catch crappie is with the use of crappie jigs. Crappie jigs basically are weighted jig heads with various types of bodies attached. But how do you know which jig color combination you should be using? There are many varying opinions in regards to which crappie jig colors work best, but the following basic guidelines should get you on the right track.
Jig Fishing in Clear Water
When you are fishing in clear or slightly stained water, try to match the color of your crappie jig to the color of what the fish are feeding on. The main staple for Crappie are small bait-fish like minnows. Jigs with silver and white hues work well in this situation.
However anything chartreuse is a good bet. Chartreuse can also be combined with other colors to enhance your offering.
Jig Fishing in Stained or Dark Water
In dark green or slightly brown water you should use dark jigs with dark combinations of colors. Color combinations that may be effective are something like black with either chartreuse, pink, yellow, or metal flake.
Crappie Jig Fishing in Low Visibility and Muddy Water
Generally speaking, the darker the water is, the brighter the bait should be. Try bright fluorescent colors like lime green, orange, yellow in extremely low visibility water (2-4 ft).
Fishing in muddy water can be very difficult for Crappie. In muddy waters, it would be wise to use an attractant on your Crappie jig. Since the Crappie cannot see the bait as easily, you will want to attract them with smell. Colors to use in muddy water include dark red, dark blue, brown, and black.
An alternative to using a fish attractant in muddy water is to lip hook a live minnow on the jig. The smell of the minnow will greatly enhance your chances of catching Crappie in this situation.
Sunlight Conditions Also Factor in When Choosing Jig Colors
Crappie primarily hunt for their prey via sight. So water color is a very important consideration when trying to analyze how Crappie will be feeding on a given day.
But always remember that fish see colors differently in different light levels. For instance, a jig color combination that was working great just after daybreak, may not work as well at noon. This is because the sunlight wasn’t penetrating into the water as much as it will be at noon. So you may need to try different color combinations throughout the day.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different colors if you are not getting the bites. And always remember, that what works on one lake, may not necessarily work on the next lake or pond you fish. It may help to keep a log of what colors worked on your fishing trips. Don’t forget to include the time of day and the water clarity into your notes.
If you have not fished with Crappie jigs before, go out and give it a try. It can be a lot of fun without the hassles of obtaining minnows and keeping them alive. Now go out and make it a Crappie day!