Author Topic: At what size do you start keeping crappie?  (Read 6997 times)

Offline keva

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At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« on: Jan 06, 2015, 05:47 PM »
I was curious how long crappie had to be before y'all considered keeping them? I have been considering chasing after some to make a good meal. Here in New York they must be 9", but I am not sure how nice the filet is from a 9" fish. So... what is everyone's opinion?

Offline Swift

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #1 on: Jan 06, 2015, 10:44 PM »
Usually depends on how thick they are, we have no size limit here. If it's legal, worth cleaning and eating, go for it nobody will say anything

Offline Van_Cleaver

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #2 on: Jan 07, 2015, 09:47 AM »
I usually look for 10'', but that's in waters where there are a bunch of them that size or bigger. Honestly you should take whatever the dominant year class though I won't keep less than 9" even if they are stunted.

Offline Kevin23

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #3 on: Jan 07, 2015, 10:12 AM »
I usually look for 10'', but that's in waters where there are a bunch of them that size or bigger. Honestly you should take whatever the dominant year class though I won't keep less than 9" even if they are stunted.

Exactly what I do.

Offline GrizlyGarou

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #4 on: Jan 07, 2015, 10:16 AM »
I go by how thick they are usually. I've had 8"ers that had more meat on them than 10"ers.

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Offline keva

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #5 on: Jan 07, 2015, 11:45 AM »
Thanks for the advice guys. Hopefully I can catch some keepers tonight.

Offline captain54

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #6 on: Jan 07, 2015, 11:56 AM »
The lake I fish has a lot of crappies 8-13 inches. I really hate people that keep small fish and play the compation game. I rather keep a dozen quality fish than 30 crappie under 10 inches.A 10.5 inch fish would be my start but have kept thick chunky 10's.Last year the crappie ran above average 11- 13 where keepers.

Offline italianice77

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #7 on: Jan 07, 2015, 03:18 PM »
Usually depends on how thick they are, we have no size limit here. If it's legal, worth cleaning and eating, go for it nobody will say anything
swift's got it right , if it's legal and your trying to fill the freezer 9 and up... but only keep what you need and don't keep going to the same place over and over and pounding on them, cause if it's a Small body of water, won't take long to fish them out.
it's all fun and games till somebody looses a walleye!!

Offline JZ

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #8 on: Jan 14, 2015, 07:35 PM »
9-13" for me anything under or over go back. But depending on the size of the lake, population etc that range can shift an inch or so either way.
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Offline greensider

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #9 on: Feb 16, 2015, 03:43 PM »
11 thats when they start to get weight on them

Offline Gills-only

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #10 on: Feb 16, 2015, 03:52 PM »
Depends on how hungry I am, usually 10"!!

Offline Kevin23

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #11 on: Feb 16, 2015, 11:49 PM »
The lake I fish has a lot of crappies 8-13 inches. I really hate people that keep small fish and play the compation game. I rather keep a dozen quality fish than 30 crappie under 10 inches.A 10.5 inch fish would be my start but have kept thick chunky 10's.Last year the crappie ran above average 11- 13 where keepers.

Keeping the 9-10" fish is usually better for a fishery than keeping just the biggest you catch because there is more meat on them...

I hate it when people criticize others for keeping 8-9" crappies but then they put an 8" male bluegill in their bucket. More meat on an 8-9in crappie and it wont hurt the fishery at all. Taking big crappie and bluegill while leaving the smaller clean-able fish will wreck a lake fast. When a crappie gets to 12-13" he is now a predator, he will eat his fill of bluegill and crappie fry each spring. Those are the fish you want to release... Its called selective harvest. I absolutely hate selfish people who only keep what they want (the breeders) instead of what is best for an ecosystem... Pulling 8-9" male gills off beds in the spring is one that comes to mind...

Offline hnd

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #12 on: Feb 19, 2015, 04:37 PM »
it all depends one who's cleaning them. 

I'll clean 8-9" crappies but i fillet, cut the skin off and cut away the ribs i don't slice under them just cut it all away with a zip of the knife.   

but i'll be honest, i'm generally not keeping anything under 11.  not because i have an issue with people doing it, but because i don't keep alot of fish.  and even if i catch an 11" er or two, i'll throw some water int he bucket until i have at least 5 because otherwise, theya re going back in. 
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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #13 on: Feb 19, 2015, 04:41 PM »
I was curious how long crappie had to be before y'all considered keeping them? I have been considering chasing after some to make a good meal. Here in New York they must be 9", but I am not sure how nice the filet is from a 9" fish. So... what is everyone's opinion?

More of a slot limit ....as stated 9 in minimum ....so 10,11 an 12 ...with larger released for gene pool maintenance...but if your get a lot of a certain year class keepers ...lets say 10 inches then 11 inches and above get released ...I hope I am doing the right thing .
Give a man a fish he eats for a day .Teach a man to ice fish he has an obsession for a lifetime

Offline luckyfish

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #14 on: Feb 19, 2015, 09:29 PM »
The smaller (8" to 10") ones hold together better in the pan!
The big ones seem to fall apart.......so usually throw the 11"+
 ones back! SSometimes I'll cut the big ones in pieces! But if
I can find the good eaters than I normally throw the bigger ones
 back in the hole! ;D
Loosing a big fish isn't the worst thin that could happen! Loosin a bigger one is!

Offline TeeBugg

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #15 on: Jan 19, 2016, 02:06 PM »
9-10". Gotta be 9" to keep here in NY but usually try to keep the 10-11" fish

Offline Monticatgeek

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #16 on: Jan 23, 2016, 10:51 PM »
For the lakes I fish here in Central Minnesota I like to keep 8 to 10 inch crappies if I want to eat some. to me under 8 and they are hard to fillet and over 10 they are better to be left in the lake for breeder stock for future crappies. it really varies from lake to lake as to keeper size fish. look at the population numbers from dnr test netting and look at the sizes they are catching and set you keeping slot by that.
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Offline river rat78

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #17 on: Jan 30, 2016, 10:43 AM »
Like others have said it depends on the lake and the thickness of the crappie. One lake I fish I will keep 8" crappies as long as they are thick. But I will only keep maybe 15 crappies out of that lake the entire year. Another lake I fish I will keep 9" if they are thick or start at 10" and release any over 13".

Offline DR.SPECKLER

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #18 on: Feb 05, 2016, 03:56 PM »
9 to 11" smaller or bigger than that goes back to see another day.i don't like the taste of the big slab specks and don't like getting the fillet knife out for anything under 9.

Offline spoofhoundicefisher

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #19 on: Feb 20, 2016, 04:11 PM »
most times if it hits the end of the line and ends up in the livewell we make them into turds around here.  there is no length limit and can keep 30.  there was a huge white class last year and this spring should be killer.  we have jerked some huge 14 and 15 inchers out this winter and have a very healthy population.  the dept. of conservation does an outstanding job of maintaining structures and adding new structures every year.

Offline Mncrappie

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #20 on: Jan 25, 2017, 11:15 PM »
Any fish over 8 I keep. Called fishing not releasing
Just a teen who loves the outdoors

Offline Chris338378

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #21 on: Jan 26, 2017, 09:02 AM »
I'll keep them at 8 inches and above.

Offline butcher

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #22 on: Jan 26, 2017, 03:13 PM »
I recently adopted a self-imposed slot limit on crappies.  Previously I kept them starting at 10" but after doing some research, I learned how long it takes them to grow to 13 inches or more.  Now I tend to keep them between 10'' and 12".  In PA, a 12 inch crappie is usually about 8 years old but a 14+" fish is nearly 20 years old.  A 10-12 inch fish makes a good fillet but it takes far less time to replace that fish.  I now release those bigger breeding fish and keep the smaller ones (under 13"). 

Offline FISH4WISH

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #23 on: Jan 26, 2017, 03:22 PM »
We here in the land of Regulations and Taxes have no choice,9" min. 25 perday.I LOVE NEW YORK! (NOT >:()


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Offline Townie

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #24 on: Feb 04, 2017, 05:50 PM »
Just over 13" went back. 11-12"'s come home

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Offline Scout 24

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #25 on: Feb 11, 2018, 02:57 PM »
11-13" is ideal for me, but only keep 5 for my family's meal. When we first started fishing crappie 17 years ago, we were slobs and kept 20 apiece. Thankfully we out grew it in a couple years and now just keep enough for a fresh meal. We fish them year round and catch a few 16-17"ers yearly and wouldn't dream of keeping those  12-14 year old breeders. We've given up on a couple spots where they kept and killed everything that comes through the hole, then the numbnuts complain when the fishing sucks?!

Offline desmobob

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #26 on: Feb 11, 2018, 04:14 PM »
Besides conservation/management, another reason to keep the smaller crappies to eat is mercury contamination.  The smaller fish have less mercury.  Check out the health advisories.  Same goes for perch... the recommended number of meals per month of 12" perch is less than smaller sizes.

I don't worry about this much myself, but if I was going to be sharing the meal with children or women of child-bearing age, I would.

Tight lines,
Bob

Offline SHaRPS

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #27 on: Feb 21, 2018, 02:45 PM »
Depends what lake i am fishing. Some lakes 10" is a pig and other 10" is the small crop.
Just add water.

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #28 on: Feb 21, 2018, 02:49 PM »
They have to be 9" here to keep so anything bigger than that goes home....     ;D
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Offline Capt.Jim-N.J.

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Re: At what size do you start keeping crappie?
« Reply #29 on: Feb 22, 2018, 02:34 PM »
Here in New Jersey, Between Black Crappie and White Crappie, 8 '', with a combined limit of 10 fish
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