The common crappie is divided into two sub-species: the black crappie and the white crappie. Black and white crappie are found in bodies of water across the United States, including moderate to large streams, river backwaters and medium to large lakes. Anglers should look for crappie near brush piles, stumps, fallen trees, rock piles and humps. These and other structures provide a safe hiding place for crappie, so fish your lure close to the bottom or wait for a strike during a shallow water feed.
A 1/16-ounce beetle spin is small in size and offers a jig and tube bait for easy visibility in the water. Opt for a small, gold blade over a silver one for superior striking action. Other spinners to use include the small willow leaf blade. Pair with a 2-inch tube bait or curly tail. You can also switch to a small silver Colorado blade. Fish the silver Colorado blade slowly and flick the tip of your rod during, casting to increase water disturbance. Rig with 2-inch tube bait and use in dark, stained water.
Maribou jigs are small and have a furry body and puffy tail. An assortment of colors is available. Opt for a silver, smoke or gray maribou jig when fishing for crappie in clear water. Hot pink, white, yellow and hot green are effective for dark, muddy water. Black maribou jigs are the best choice when fishing for crappie at night. Rig your line vertically with a 1/16- or 1/32-ounce maribou jig and hang it over a structure or suspend it under a bobber.
Curly-tail grubs are plastic lures that have a curly tail and are available in an assortment of sizes, including 1½ to 2½ inches. Curly-tail grubs produce a significant amount of water disturbance and provide the most action when jigged or retrieved in a fixed and sturdy manner. Rig curly-tail grubs with a 1/8- to 1/64-ounce jig head and add color, depending on the water condition. For example, use browns and greens when trolling at the bottom of clear water or when fishing on an overcast day. Sparkles and flashy colors are best for dark, stained water.