You will see a lot of crappie anglers fishing at night right now.
There are reasons for this. One is to avoid the heat of the daytime. Another is to avoid the boat traffic and jet skies you get during the daytime hours. But fishing at nighttime this time of year also has a huge advantage over daytime fishing for crappie, and that is most of the crappie will be more active at night when it’s cooler.
Crappie are fish that prefers cooler, deeper water most of the time and become stressed and inactive in shallow warm water. This water has a low oxygen level that makes fish inactive. So night fishing is a wise choice this time of year.
The biggest thing you need to look for when looking for a spot to night fish for crappie is some type of cover. Crappie are very cover and structure orientated fish. They will search out key spots with suitable cover when looking for a spot to hold on and feed on. Finding these areas are key to success.
Look for any type of cover from wood to weeds to rocks. On most of our area lakes, wood is by far the form of cover most used by crappie. On lakes in Tennessee where wood is not seen much, crappie seen to relate to large rock ridges and humps. Weed beds and green tree limbs like willow trees hanging over in the water make great places to fish for crappie.
Bait choices are simple — live minnows or small tube baits or curly tail grub. There are some small crank baits made for crappie. Most anglers use minnows rigged on small hooks and you can use a floater or not. I prefer to use one. I can see the strike better and tell more about what the bait is doing.
When you find a spot to fish, start fishing about four to six feet deep and change the depth when action slows. Crappie are very color picky at time so change colors as needed.
Give this style of fishing a try the next night trip you take.