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Put A Jig In It

Posted by editor on April 29, 2016

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It’s dawn and I'm in a race with the sun to make it to that serene spot on my favorite lake. With the sound of chirping birds, quacking ducks and the occasional lament of a bull frog, I quietly drift around a bend to the little coveted cove, reaching my destination just a hair shy of the sun rising.

With baited excitement, I cannot wait to get my hook in the water. Buck brush overhangs the bank’s edge while moss covered tree stumps rises out the glassy waters like Mother Nature’s unique pedestals. All of which provide the perfect cover for crappie. I know they are there. The question is: How am I going to get them to bite? My choice of lure today is the (Jig). 

If variety is the spice of life, then you are in for a lot of fun when it comes to fishing with jigs. There are many types of jigs and a variety of colors. To name a few, there are the tube jigs with a skirt like tail, single tail, hair jigs and the combination of using a bladed jig head paired with a plastic bait. My first choice will be a tube jig. The tail adds more action, and it's bait I've been using since I started fishing.

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Single tail baits and hair jigs made with marabou are particularly good to use when crappie are finicky. The bladed jig paired with plastic bait is a unique set up in that the blade helps in a couple of ways: It causes vibration, which helps the crappie locate the bait. This is especially helpful when fishing in stained water. When fishing in clear water the flash from the blade imitates small baitfish thus attracting larger slabs. My all time favorite jig head color is my Roper Outdoors Blue Shiner Jig Head paired with a Roper Outdoors Lime/Chartreuse Tube. If this combination is not working, I'll use a pink jig head (especially in the spring) paired with black/chartreuse tube. When fishing in stained to muddy water, I pair a chartreuse jig head with an orange/chartreuse tube. You’ve probably noticed that chartreuse is my go-to color. Most crappie anglers will have a black and chartreuse jig in their tackle box. Whenever I have asked crappie anglers their reason for using that color, the answer is always simple: “because it catches fish”. Dad and I always wanted to know why crappie preferred that color combination.

Our research showed that no matter how clear, muddy, shallow, or deep you are fishing, the color black can be seen. It is the last color to disappear or change on the color chart. However there are colors when you are fishing in deeper depths, will actual loose their color. This is due to the lease amount of natural light. Therefore, when UV light comes in contact with chartreuse or other fluorescent colors, it glows. Crappie and other pan fish, such as the black bass, see in UV. Things that appear to the human eye look totally different to crappie. Now that we understand a little more about jigs and colors, let us explore the possibilities of combining lure choice with technique. One such technique is vertical jigging. Vertical jigging is like a tease to crappie. It is a great technique to use when crappie are relating to cover.


Cover is anything that a crappie can get in, on, around, under, or behind to feel protected or at an advantage to ambush small bait fish. When crappie relates to cover they stay in close proximity only 1 to 5 ft from the cover source. Factors such as a nearby predator or perhaps a change in the flow of the current can cause crappies to relate to cover. When looking for good cover spots, consider lay-downs, stumps, standing timber, bridge pilings, stake beds and bushes that are in the water.

To Be Continued >>>>

By Jarad Roper

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