It’s crappie fishing time on Lake Eufaula, but it always is. Crappie are spawning and are in the shallow water and button brush along the banks.
But crappie can be caught regularly after the spawn is over.
Lake Eufaula crappie guide Todd Huckabee says he catches more crappie on Eufaula in May, June and July than any other time of the year.
“My favorite time to fish for them is when it’s a 100 degrees outside,” Huckabee said. “They are just a lot more predictable. They are not scattered out.’’
After the spawn, the crappie move to staging areas and can be found in much smaller areas.
Right now on Eufaula, Huckabee is catching crappie in 8 to 10 feet of water on black and chartreuse jigs and black and pink jigs.
But some anglers put too much stock in jig color, he said.
“To me, 90 percent of the time color does not matter as much as the depth that you are fishing and the presentation you are giving the jig,” he said. “The 10 percent of the time that it does matter, it is very, very important.
“If you are in an area where there is no fish or they are inactive, no matter what jig color you put in front of them, you are not going to catch them.
“I can take the wrong-color jig today and catch more fish than somebody else in my boat that has the right jig color, unless I explain to them how we are fishing. The biggest part is finding actively feeding fish.”
Huckabee said jig colors are very important in two extreme conditions: When the water is super muddy and when the water is crystal clear.
“The reason it matters a lot when the water is real muddy is because those fish can’t see very well in that real, real muddy water and you need a bait that is going to create a silohouette that they can see,” he said.
“When the water is real, real clear, they can see that bait real well so you want to go with a more natual color to get an actual feeding bite as opposed to a reaction bite out of ‘em.”
For gear, Huckabee recommends using a 2-inch Beavertail jig, which is really a big bait for crappie, with a 3/16th ounce jig head.
“Use two of those on 10-pound test,” he said. “Use a real stiff rod and you feel the bite a lot better and you can yank them out of there a lot quicker.”