Smaller sizes in lures can work well for crappie fishing

LITTLE ROCK, Ar (AGFC) - The report came from an Arkansas lake that crappie were hitting small long-billed Rebels.

Sure, most anglers who have worked bass-type lures in crappie waters have occasionally caught crappie on them. If it looks like a shad or a minnow, crappie will home in on it - sometimes.

More than 30 years ago when the Big O hit the fishing world in full stride as the hottest bass lure of the period, fishermen reported getting hits from crappie too. The Big O and its imitations then were offered in smaller sizes, and more crappie hit them.

A favorite of many anglers for years has been Rebel's Crickhopper, a small lure that resembles a cross between a cricket and a grasshopper. It comes in a variety of colors, and it will catch crappie as well as bream and other fish.

Another old favorite is the small size Beetle Spin. It is a conventional spinner bait but with a plastic body, not hair, than can be changed.

The lesson here may be to not limit your thinking in going after crappie. Most Arkansans think of minnows and jigs for crappie work. Yes, there are those who scoff at minnows. "I don't use anything except jigs." That's all right.

Others like to play around with different baits and lures. "Think outside the box" is the term for innovations like this.

A small lure that may look like a shad, a minnow or a crawfish just might draw a hit from a crappie when the more common attractions like jigs and minnows won't.