Ph.D.’s know more about the secret lives of gamefish than any fishing pro might hope to.
Outdoor Life sought out some of the biologists whose work is on the leading edge of this revolutionary research. Their startling revelations are guaranteed to make you more successful this season.


EZ Crappie Locator
During the pre-spawn, crappies move into shoreline cover such as submerged timber and coves in preparation for breeding. But, as it turns out, not all shoreline cover is created equal. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources biologists have discovered that crappies have a decided preference for specific types of shoreline nesting cover.

The Study
To determine nest-site preference, researchers patrolled the circumference of three lakes a total of five times each in search of crappie nests. In total, 478 crappie nests were located.

Lessons Learned
The study concluded that crappies showed a distinct preference for nesting near shorelines with a canopy, emergent vegetation, and an understory, avoiding submerged vegetation and developed shorelines. Those that were located adjacent to developed shorelines were decidedly deeper. Approximately 90 percent of all nests were located in and around stands of hardstem bulrush, which can be found virtually throughout the country.

What It All Means
The presence of hardstem bulrush can be a tip-off to good fishing. Crappies will seek out deeper water near developed shorelines, indicating that they use depth as a surrogate for hardstem bulrushes in areas of high human activity–all great information to keep in mind when choosing a spot to fish for crappies this spring.

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