Tube jigs have come a long way toward making it possible to catch crappie under any conditions. They have recently been manufactured in a variety of styles and sizes to create versatility and enhance the uses of tube jigs, particularly when it comes to catching crappie. How you use your tube jigs will depend a great deal on where you are fishing and if you are fishing for black or white crappie.
If you are fishing for black crappie, it will help you to understand that they really live in the shallows for the most part. Their main food source is small crustaceans and small minnows. Black crappie have smaller mouths, and take smaller bait as a result. White crappie have bigger mouths, and take bigger bait. They are much more migratory, and stay in the shallows only at certain times of the year. As a result of these differences within the species, you have to adjust your tube bait accordingly. If you are targeting black crappie, use anywhere from an inch to an inch and a half tube bait. When targeting white crappie, use from an inch and three-quarters to three inch tube baits.
Another consideration when choosing tube bait is the clarity of the water in which you will be fishing. The clearer the water, the smaller the tube bait you will want to use. Generally speaking, black crappie like clearer water, while white crappie like murkier waters. To attract crappie in murky water, you need a tube jig large enough to create some vibration for them to hone in on. Consider such tube jigs as Midsouth Tackle Superjig Tubes in three inch sizes, or Southern Pro Crappie Magnums in two inch sizes, for muddy waters. You could never use these huge sizes in clear waters, though.
The tube jig has taken the place of the minnow as the most popular crappie bait for good reasons. The most prevalent reason is that the tube jigs are just easier to use than minnows. The tube jigs are not messy. You don't have to catch them if you drop them in the bottom of your boat. You don't have to worry about them dying on you when the day is especially hot or long. Also, crappie tube jigs are really durable. You can easily catch over twenty five fish without ever having a crappie tube jig come off your line. You just can not do that with a minnow. They are much easier to retrieve than a minnow on a hook ever could be.
They do not get hung up as easily, and that makes it much easier to fish in heavy brush areas, which is where the crappie can almost always be found.
Probably the single best reason cited for using crappie tube jigs, though, is that they catch crappie, and that is, after all, what you have gone fishing for!
If you have decided to give crappie tube jigs a try, you will need to know a little bit about rigging them. Start by choosing a jig head. You will choose by hook size, style, and weight, among other considerations.