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Black Crappie (Pomoxis nigromaculatus)

The Black Crappie or Pomoxis nigromaculatus is a common freshwater fish found in all of the 48 lower states. Its body is small with an arched back, with a similar shape to that of the Bluegill and Rock Bass. The Black Crappie can be a silvery-green to a yellowish color with many black spots on the sides of its body and fins. They are very similar to their close relative the White Crappie, but can be differentiated by counting the dorsal spines. Black Crappie have 7 or 8 dorsal spines with the White Crappie only having 5 or 6.

Also known as the Speckled Perch, Calico Bass and the Papermouth, the Black Crappie can live to about 15 years but most only reaching about 7 years old. The largest Black Crappie ever caught was in Louisiana and weighed in at an impressive 6lbs!If you are fishing for Black Crappie you can find them in clear ponds, lakes and the occasional some slow moving river. The Black Crappie will feed on insects when smaller, but will start to feed on small fish once they become mature. To catch these edible freshwater fish you can use a small jig, spoons, spinners, flies and of course, the trusty minnow. One trick to consider is to place fish hides or hurdles which consist of Christmas trees and other woody debris. This is said to attract the Black Crappie.  You can check out the Black Crappie and some other amazing fish in the video below from Lake Powell.
Once caught, these freshwater fish are considered to be one of the tastiest panfish in The United States! If you have a Black Crappie recipe or a fishing tip that you would like to share please do so in the comments below.

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