View Full Version : Knowledge Question Poll

04-05-2013, 02:12 PM
You seem to be pretty knowledgeable my friends. I am doing a survey at what the "Average" depth for finding ACTIVELY FEEDING crappie are. So far I have polled ten members and the average depth is 6.5 feet for active feeding crappie. What say you? These will be your choices. Your vote and comments are encouraged. I just want to see what the tournament and the average weekend fishermen think. I know there are a lot of variables. I usually start at six feet with a slip float or free fall a jig and then work up or down in the water column based on wind, climate, water temperature, and where my depth finder finds baitfish. I also start with a dropshot too set at 1 foot off bottom. I then let the fish tell me where they are and what color they prefer.

Under three feet
Four feet
Five feet
Six Feet
7 Feet

04-05-2013, 02:30 PM
7 Feet

04-05-2013, 02:31 PM
If you are talking spring time, that is very close. Let me say before our Hydrilla got killed off things have changed every year since that. I guess they felt it was too much and needed to be got back under control, but I still wish they had left it alone for the most part. Then we had a drought just as it was coming back and that really hurt a lot. Last spring was the first time in over 1 1/2 years that we finally got water back from being 13' low so there was only stumps and no grass of any kind so that was the hardest time and I had to fish in water 15' to 20' long line trolling to catch fish so that was very unusual. It was a huge disappointment last spring after having my boat stuck in it's slings for over 1 1/2 years only to get water back, but not enough time after the lake filled to get any grass under 10' of water. The crappie have been having to change about every year for the last 5 or so year here and that makes it a little harder. I use to be able to long line in water that really didn't have very many stumps at all, just a lot of Hydrilla, but now I have to troll areas that are full of stumps and grass and I do mean full of stumps. After all remember this was a National Forrest when the lake was built and flooded.

So before the Hydrilla loss I mostly fished 7' of water. However one year they dropped the lake level in March 2 feet in 2 weeks just as the crappie moved in to the banks for spawn. That year I found them in 9 1/2' of water and they spent the entire Spring at that depth. So far this year with at least some kinds of grass in the stump fields the crappie have been pretty steady, but range in water from mostly 7' to 9'. Lately you needed to be in water very close to7' to 8' with cold weather moving them out just to 9' to 10' and you have to find the right spot each time out as it changes some. I would say this year is again different over what I call normal and you really have to pay close attention to what water you catch your first fish in each day. The last few weeks nothing less than 7' and most right around 8' water.

Sorry to take so much talking to say this, but it's been a big game every year for the last 5 or so years. First 10 years here just had to be close as possible to 7'! Hope this helps, but not sure this answer is one that can be easy to average in??


04-05-2013, 02:31 PM
7 feet

04-05-2013, 02:32 PM
I find crappie best year round in 12-18 foot of water. Typically the best depth range is 6-8 foot deep. There are so many variables though. These include weather, time of day, and time of year and many others. Crappie tend to be shallower in spring and year round in low light times such as dusk and dawn. The lake you are fishing factors in as structure, water fertility, water flow, water clarity and water temps are among a few. The biggest variable to me is the species you are targeting as Black Crappie as I normally target tend to suspend a lot in open water. This makes long lining the best pattern most of the time for them. White Crappie tend to hold more to structure, such as under docks or brush piles. This is why dock shooting and spider rigging great most of the times for them. Not to say many of both species are caught with each of these tactics, but saying these fish are different.

04-05-2013, 02:36 PM
It varies of course, but more often than not, where I fish 6 feet is where the bite occurs.

04-05-2013, 02:37 PM
I am doing a survey at what the "Average" depth for finding crappie are. So far I have polled ten members and the average depth is 6.5 feet for active feeding crappie. What say you?

04-05-2013, 03:01 PM
Here I fish most of the year 4' to 8' deep so average would be 6 ' on my home lake. On Dardanelle though it can be 5' to 40' depending on time of year ?

04-05-2013, 03:08 PM
There is no average depth unless the lake is super shallow and fish can't really move up or down in the water column, like a lot of FL lakes. I think your question would work better if you asked this question for a specific body of water, during a specific time of year. I fish a lake if FL that is 100 ft deep amd super clear and you rarely catch fish less than 40ft down. I could load up my boat and be at another lake in 30 mins that's only 7ft deep and fish are usually caught 3-4ft down.................see what I'm saying? To many variables, especially with crappie who are known to move up or down in the water column in a single day of fishing..........

04-05-2013, 03:11 PM
We fish a deep clear lake most of the good crappie fishing is in spring and fall/winter.10-15 ' still a lot of underwater timber where the crappie suspend which makes them hard to find and catch.

panfish angler
04-05-2013, 06:26 PM
In the lakes I usually catch most of mine 10-15 ft.

04-05-2013, 06:37 PM
Well really there is no average. It varies from lake to lake....state to state.....water levels......whether the spillways are running or not. Weather fronts....time of year....and water temp. Right now is the spawn period here.....the fish I am catching now are squirting eggs some when I take them off the hook. They should all be in very shallow ater now laying eggs.....they are a little late this year do to conditions. They will be in shallow laying eggs in in just a few days I think. For the past few weeks some fish are being caught shallow in 5 fow and some are still in 10 to 15 fow. The feeding depthat that you referred to depends on the depths the shad are running. It would be very hard to just determine a average feeding depth. I check it out eack time I go buy makeing a scouting run at 4 mph useing my electronics......side imagineing is the way to go. When I find them I note the depth they are suspended at and try to place my baits slightly above them. They will come up a couple of feet to get a bait but they will not go down

04-05-2013, 08:23 PM
For me I catch most in 8-10 feet down in water 12-15 deep. Year round. I don't fish the spawn. They need to repopulate so I can continue to fish.

snake River
04-05-2013, 08:57 PM
most of the fish that we catch our in about 10 foot of water sometimes deeper we fish in 35 feet of water to find the fish depends on the weather here is you know it is cooler here on the West Coast of the state of Oregon so the fish may be deeper water depending on the temperature from Springtime to fall they will very in peak spawn they are in a shallows.

04-05-2013, 10:11 PM
I always start out fishing on the bottom no matter what depth of water I am in,of course its according what time of year it is. I will watch my depth/fish finder and adjust accordingly.I usually only fish for (crappie only) after duck season ends which is the end of january and I will fish up until spawning time for (crappie only).When it hits spawning time for crappie I will start casting small jigs for whatever wants to take it because the bluegill and shellcrackers are usually in the biting mood at this time.I will also listen to whatever reports I get from friends and crappie.com

04-06-2013, 07:09 AM
In my lakes I fish from 2 to 30 feet depending on all the variables already stated. Spawn they are shallow and winter they sit in 20 to 30 fow. I find the active fish in most anytime but the spawn to be above or outside the concentration of fish. I was told when I started that if you went to the playground that you wouldn't find the grandparents and the toddlers in the same group. The older folks stay out of the way and let the kids do their thing. So I try to fish the top of a deep brushpile first, and work down, or the outside in. Both work. There are very few trollers on the three lakes I fish that would give a better answer to your question IMHO. Even bridge posts here vary over 15' in the depth the fish hold. Sorry I couldn't do any better.

04-06-2013, 09:20 PM
Other than the spawn and late fall when they move shallow, I can generally find them in 10-15ft of water

eagle 1
04-07-2013, 09:06 AM
need more imfo .:dono

04-07-2013, 06:54 PM
Our lake averages a depth of 8' ......

4 feet

04-12-2013, 07:33 PM
I appreciate everyone's input. Thank you.

04-15-2013, 01:15 PM
I agree with Souther Young Gun, tough question to answer. In one lake I fish where it never gets deeper than 5 feet they obviously can't go any deeper. Another lake I fish, reservoir, with depths of 30 feet they can be anywhere in the water column depending on the time of year.

04-15-2013, 03:12 PM
Caught em in 8 inches to 80 feet of water...:dono

04-15-2013, 03:34 PM
On my lake (Houghton Lake, Michigan, maximum depth 23 feet), early spring crappies are usually less than 3 feet down. The best and biggest during the spawn (May-June) are usually at 9-12 feet.

Cane Pole
04-15-2013, 06:44 PM
Between 4 foot and 9 foot. Our boat dock straddles a good drop off. 4-9 foot is the summer/winter reservoir rise-fall depths at this drop. Brenda catches fish here year round while I macho off and waste gas.

04-17-2013, 03:48 PM
We caught Crappie in 5 FOW in a 55 acre lake I didn't know held crappie at all, and the wife caught the biggest one as usual.:banghead