Night fishing for panfish

2/15/15 @ 7:18 AM
ORIGINAL POST
rivrbanks
rivrbanks
USER since 2/2/15
Read different articles over the years about Night fishing for crappie and gills. Tried it several times with no luck. Fished areas where we caught fish in the daytime. Tried it with no lights, lantern on the ice, and submerged neon light. Am I doing something wrong, or are the article writers more about being paid per line of script. Would like to hear about someone having luck, and the methods they used.
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Displaying 1 to 7 of 7 Posts
2/17/15 @ 2:56 PM
guttersnake
guttersnake
USER since 9/15/05
Stick with crappies.I do catch some gills after dark and a few small perch at twilight.But for the money your better with crappies after dark.I'm in SE With and that about all I ever fish in the winter down this way.Our lakes are pretty clear also.I rarely ever catch them in daylight hours except for a couple lakes and late ice I can get them in the daylight.

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2/17/15 @ 8:12 AM
lakeshiner
lakeshiner
USER since 7/20/09
I agree with just crappies. As a kid I would go around at night with a flash light and see perch and gills in our little boat lagoon. They just sat there sort of dormant. The only way they would even react to a bait is if you hit them in the head with it. Even then you'd have to do it a few times before they bit out of spite. They would not even flinch otherwise. This was during summer and warm water where they should be the most active. Looking back now I think its probably not legal to use a light to target fish at night, but I never realized it as a kid. I was probably 8.

Edited on 2/17/15 8:14 AM
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2/17/15 @ 6:47 AM
BigMusky12
BigMusky12
MEMBER since 12/22/04
Perch and bluegill do not prefer to eat after dark, so you really should target crappie. I think the main struggle people have with night fishing is staying mobile to find them. The sun is down and even if air temp is decent, it is much colder. This impacts peoples willingness to search for active fish. It is no different than any other time of day with crappie, you need to find them. Once you do, they will bite.

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2/16/15 @ 11:59 AM
PimplySwede
PimplySwede
USER since 1/6/09
Over the years I've caught many crappies after dark, and the occasional surprise bluegill.

Crappies have always been on live bait, and since I'm always fishing minnows for crappies, the gills have been on minnows too.

One of the best nights was many years ago on Big Round in Polk county. Got set up at about 10:00 pm. Steady crappie bite through 2am, with a couple bonus gills at midnight.

What I've come to notice though, is the night bite has been in northern Wisconsin and Minnesota lakes. The only crappies I've caught after dark around Eau Claire was a couple years ago using a flyrod and a Mayfly imitation on Lake Altoona during the hatch.

I honestly can't recall catching any perch after dark.

Edited on 2/16/15 12:00 PM
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2/15/15 @ 10:31 AM
marbleeyes7
marbleeyes7
USER since 4/1/12
i have only caught crappies for pan fish after dark, but you might want to check out a awesome video of brad hawthorn on you tube hammering big gills on a m.n. lake at 8-9pm. just search brad hawthorn night time gills it will pop up. interesting video but i have yet to ice a gill after dark myself. brad guides out of an outfit i go to on upper red in the winter and next year we are going to have to pick his brain on this more. maybe a guide trip after dark.

Edited on 2/15/15 10:31 AM
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2/15/15 @ 9:17 AM
moon-glo
moon-glo
USER since 11/6/09
The only panfish I've ever caught at night are crappies. What I've found is if the fish are there they'll bite or they won't bite. That is if you have a locator telling you that they are there. Lights by the hole in the shack or tent never seemed to matter. As far as bluegills or perch, regardless of how much I've read to the contrary, I've never caught either of them after dark. I'm 64 and have done my share of fishing. I found it humorous to find an article in the current Wisconsin Sportsman magazine explaining how to catch panfisn at night. Sometimes I think these writers need new material to write about. Just my humble opinion.

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