5 Panfish Fishing Tips

Use these 5 panfish fishing tips to catch more fish in less time. Panfishing is one of the most common forms of fishing. Bluegill, Crappie, and other panfish are well distributed across the United States and are not too difficult to catch, making them an ideal fish for beginners. Plus, many are good fighters for their size, making them a nice challenge for experienced fishermen and fisherwomen to pursue as well. Whether you are just beginning to fish or have years of experience here are five panfish fishing tips to improve your success.

  1. Use a small rod and reel. While many panfish put up a good fight they do not require the use of a large rod and reel. This is one of the most important tips; by downsizing equipment, an angler will be able to cast smaller lures with more accuracy, detect small bites, and set the hook without tearing the fish’s mouth. An ultralight rig with four-pound test line is a good combo for most panfishing.
  2. Use small hooks. As panfish generally have smaller mouths than other game fish, smaller hooks are needed to increase the chances of getting them on the hook. Hooks in the #8 of #10 range are a good place to start. Move to larger hooks if you are fishing large lakes or rivers and to smaller hooks for small streams.
  3. Fishing near structures will improve your odds. As panfish are generally preyed upon by bass, muskie, and other larger fish, they usually stay close to cover. Look for them to be near aquatic vegetation, sunken logs, docks, and other locations where they might find an area to hide.
  4. Use a bobber or float to maintain depth and adjust depth in a reliable manner. The use of a bobber of float is a great help to those panfishing regardless of if they are using a lure or bait. These will help to keep the lure or bait at the same depth where fish have been found and will allow an angler to consistently adjust their presentation deeper or shallower.
  5. Keep fishing where you catch. This tip might seem obvious, but they generally swim in schools and are rarely found alone. When hooking one, get it reeled in and cast to the same location as quickly as possible before the school moves or stops biting.

Use these five panfish fishing tips the next time you go fishing and see how they work for you!

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