Best Crappie Lures Jigs Bait
Best Crappie Lures Jigs Bait – You can call them crappie or speckled bass, but angling for these aggressive panfish with a rod is as much fun as any other sport. Crappie can be found all over the country, including in Louisiana and Michigan.
As any crappie enthusiast will tell you, it is important to carefully choose your lures and pay attention to the water color and lighting conditions. We’ll be discussing how we pick our crappie lures, and reviewing some of our favorite ones.
Here’s a quick look at the top crappie lures, baits and jigs:
- Johnson Original Beetle Spin
- Bass Pro Shops Marabou Crappie Jig
- Berkley Gulp! Crappie Nibbles
- Quikset Weedless Jigheads
- Berkley Gulp! Minnows
- Worden’s Original Rooster Tail
How to Choose a Crappie Lure
Selection is not a science, but variety is key. We do have some guidelines that we would like to share.
Anglers have to be careful about choosing the right color lure. You’ve probably seen a friend using a different lure to pull fish out of the water at the exact same spot as you are casting. If you talk with fishermen for longer than 30 seconds, the conversation will quickly turn to favorite lures or colors.
As any experienced angler will tell you, the right color can make all the difference in fishing or catching. Here’s our take after years of fishing and extensive research.
- Water color matters Crappie can see well in clear water so it is important to choose realistic colors. Bright colors may still be attractive to crappie, but subdued hues, natural tones, and lures that closely match prey items are better options. Brighter colors can trigger a predatory response if the water is stained or murky.
- Pay attention to the light Any metallic, reflective flash in bright sunlight is a good idea. This is because the shimmer looks almost like a small minnow and attracts crappie from a distance.
- The deeper you go, the more color disappears Even the most clear water can absorb light quickly, altering how colors are perceived when a lure drops further. The first to go is red, followed by yellow, green and blue.
The chart below shows that color is very important when fishing in shallow water. Red and orange might not be visible if you are jigging for crappie at the bottom. This depends on how deep you fish. The color of your quarry is more important the deeper it is.
What do you recommend? These would be my top choices if I had to choose just four lure colors for crappie:
- Black It is easily visible in clear water and performs well in all light conditions. It also offers a beautiful silhouette from below.
- White It provides a great contrast in dark or stained water. It’s especially effective when used with a metallic spinner.
- Chartreuse It can sometimes be magical and this is something that many anglers know. It has high visibility and high contrast like white. You can fish it deep without losing its vividness.
- Metallic flash According to my experience, this is a very important feature in crappie lures. This can be provided by a spinner which has other benefits, or by the color of a minnow’s sides, so I recommend that you include this in your crappie toolbox.
Crappie don’t get the name “papermouths” accidentally. If you are an avid angler, then you know that a gentle hookset for crappie is crucial. There are some things to consider when choosing lures or hooks for crappie.
Crappie can hold a very large hook due to their large mouths. We will often fish #4 and #2 hooks depending on the bait we use. It is worth noting, however, that smaller hooks (#6 and #6) can easily be ripped from crappie’s mouths due to the small gap between shank and business end.
Crappie lure and Bait Reviews
Johnson Original Beetle Spin
Available at Bass Pro
Johnson’s beetle spinning spins are a popular staple in many anglers tackle boxes. This combination of a soft bait and a spinning blade is basically a jig on steroids. The blade adds flash and motion to the soft bait and jighead combo. We recommend 1/4 ounces for crappie, as well as 1/32, 1/16 and 1/8 if you have a rod that can throw that size lure.
Both gold and silver blades produce strikes, but our top picks for the soft bait color are–unsurprisingly–“white red dot,” “white black spots,” “black chartreuse,” and “chartreuse black spots.” All Johnson beetle spins feature a black jig head with white eyes, and by selecting the contrasting soft bait color for your conditions, you can make this a lethal weapon in your crappie arsenal.
We love beetle spins because they are versatile and can cover a lot water quickly. We can locate active fish quickly by letting the beetle spin and then running it with a pause, twitch, and/or cruising just below the surface. Try it next time you are fishing in large lakes. You will be amazed at how efficient it is.
We like soft bait options too. These can be combined with your spins to replace the two original soft baits. They willwear out after many strikes!
Worden’s Original Rooster Tail
If I had to choose one type of lure for crappie fishing, it would be the Roost Tail. These lures combine a flashing blade, colored cylindrical bodies, and a touch feathery fringe at hook to create magic.
Worden’s roostertails come in many sizes. For crappie, we like 1/4 ounces, 1/8 ounces, and 1/4 ounces. All three sizes have proven to be successful time after time. This lure is irresistible to most species, so it will catch bass, bluegill, perch and just about any other fish in the water.
Our favorite colors are white, black, chartreuse and firetiger. There are many options for blade materials.
You can fish Rooster Tails like beetle spins using many techniques. A strike can be triggered by any technique, from slow and steady to fast and even burning speed. Because they cast so well you can cover large areas quickly and find the fish or move on to better opportunities.
Bass Pro Shops Marabou Crappie Jig
Available at Bass Pro
Marabou jigs work wonders on crappie. They have a soft feel and fringe that is irresistible to these fish. These lures are a mix of a fly head and a jighead. They provide the weight you need for a good jigging technique, with an almost lifelike action.
These are especially useful in cold and foul weather.
We recommend that you choose #4 over #6, because crappie’s larger, more tender mouths will be better served by hooks with a slightly larger size. These lures will weigh in at one-eighth of an ounce, making them ideal for ultralight tackle.
We love “red white white”, chartreuse and black, so it’s no surprise that we like them!
Jigging is a very effective technique once you are aware of where the active schools are. Start slowly, using small movements of your wrist and a few stops. If you don’t get a strike, move to more active jigging.
We like to place our jig heads under a cork that is the right size for the rig, especially if spider-rigging is allowed in your area. Make sure to include a swivel so your jig can move freely. We’ve included it in the Bubble Rig below. Although we don’t think you need a fluorocarbon lead, pros do use them.
Berkley Gulp! Crappie Nibbles
Available at Bass Pro
Soft baits work best, and Berkley’s Crappie Nibbles is a great choice. They will drive fish crazy by releasing scent into the water around the lure. We also find that they are consistent in getting bites regardless of weather conditions. There are four color options available: yellow, white, chartreuse and chartreuse. It’s worth trying different colors to find the best Nibble for you.
They are great for Quikset Weedless Jigheads in all three weights (#2, #4), and you can sweeten maribou jigs or beetle spins with them as well. Quicksets can be a great asset for fishing in and around weedbeds. You’ll spend less time cleaning or snagging your jig heads and more time casting.
Quicksets come unpainted so make sure to stop by Walmart and pick up a few bottles of nail polish. Black is a good choice as well as red and white. Bright yellow should not be overlooked. You can paint the jig head in different colors when you return home. Always add an eye. Then, see which color works best for you.
Berkley Gulp! Minnows
Available at Bass Pro
Berkley Gulp is another soft bait sweetener option! Minnow. These tiny soft baits look just like the real deal and are scented with crappie scent. The one-inch size is what we like and the “chartreuse, rainbow, and firetiger” are all good options.
We recommend having at least one color that is realistic, some sparkle, as well as a variety of colors for different light and water conditions. These are great for crappie, no matter how you put them on a jig or on your beetle spin.
Live bait is a great way to kill crappie. No matter how you rig your minnows or what rig you use to do it, live bait can have a devastating effect on crappie.
We love the Mr. Crappie-Tech Double Drop Rigs as well as the Mr. Crappie-Tech Crappie Rigs for spider rigging. They can be used with many different baits. We have also had great success tightlining the Bullet Weights Mr. Crappie Rig as well as the Eagle Claw Crappie Rig.
We like to rig our own tackle from time to time, so we use Mustad Classic Aberdeen hooks and Eagle Claw Aberdeen hooks. They are thin enough to keep minnows alive for long periods of time and will bend when we grab them. Once we have loosened them, it’s simple to get them back with a pair pliers.
We like #1, #2, and #4 in terms of size. You can add a little split shot or a pencil screw to tap the bottom and you are good to go!
You will notice a difference in quality when you use a floating bait. Pairing a Thill Crappie Cork with the right weight bait and rig will help you detect even the smallest nibbles. A slip float such as theThill makes it easy to cast and set the depth of your tackle.
You won’t regret it!
There is no one “best” crappie bait, but there are many that work well when fished properly. Any of these lures can deliver depending on how the light and water are. We hope this article helps you if you have never tried any of these lures or are new to “papermouth” fishing.
We are confident that you will have more success if you remember what we said about hook size and color selection. Let us know if you decide to try any of the suggestions we made above. We would love to hear from your.
If you have a favorite crappie lure that we missed, please leave a comment below.