• Freshwater Fishing

    Crappie will gravitate to offshore contours that most anglers drive right over on their way to more obvious crappie fishing locations.

    Hiding in plain sight

    It’s crappie season in Mississippi, the most famous “perch jerking” state in the Union, where this time of the year on any major body of water you can find anglers nearly shoulder to shoulder hoping to catch a limit.

    March 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Ken Covington swings a nice blue cat into Capt. Bob Crosby’s Blue Cat Guide Service charter boat on the Mississippi River near Vicksburg.

    Singing the blues — Keys to the Mississippi River’s monster catfish

    Capt. Bob Crosby motored out to the Mississippi River and we were greeted with beautiful marmalade-colored skies and crisp, cold weather as a cold front of passed through.

    March 01, 2017 at 7:00am

    These giant catfish have become pigeon hunters

    Catfish are not picky eaters. They are known to eat a wide variety of foods, including seeds, crawfish, insects, frogs and other fish. When food is scarce they will even scour the bottom for decomposing fish or bugs. So when some pigeons wander too close to the shore it's no surprise these European catfish have learned to seize the opportunity for a hearty meal.

    February 24, 2017 at 12:00pm
    Bigger baits, bigger jigheads and bigger minnows will often lead to bigger crappie.

    Bigger baits mean bigger crappie

    Several years ago, I had the opportunity to handle a really big crappie.

    February 16, 2017 at 6:00am
    A spinnerbait case modified with a block of foam makes a fine holder for craft tubes stuffed with rigs and spare tackle.

    Homemade crappie rig box

    Bobby Murray loves a hot crappie bite, and he likes to be ready to maximize every opportunity he gets. Suffice it to say, he has plenty of tackle bags to carry all the hardware and baits he needs, but Murray has developed a simple but effective system for keeping key items at close reach.

    February 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    Light action spinning outfits with lots of tip flexibility are the way to go with slip float rigs.

    Tackle tips for crappie fishing

    Notwithstanding his penchant for simplicity, Toledo Bend guide Jerry Thompson has given much thought to certain aspects of his terminal tackle and rigging.

    February 15, 2017 at 7:00am
    After tricking a crappie to think it is spawning season, hormone injections stimulate the release of eggs.

    Crappie culture breakthroughs

    Stocking crappie into public waters is rarely needed, but some systems occasionally could benefit from adding fish to supplement weak year classes.

    February 06, 2017 at 9:00am
    A nifty method for presenting baits at a particular depth, the slip float rig allows anglers to hang a bait in the strike zone.

    Sip-float slabs — Top fishing tips for wintertime crappie

    In most activities, a slip-up is a bad thing. Botched snap that leads to a recovered fumble, dropping an easy fly ball, missing that breakaway slam dunk — all bad.

    But for crappie fishermen, a slip-up can actually refer to a well-planned tactic for tempting those tasty schooling fish.

    February 01, 2017 at 7:00am
    Don Henson of  Southaven set new state and world records with this garilla — a 46-pound, 1-ounce longnose gar caught at the Sardis Lake spillway in September.

    ‘Garilla’ — Sardis spillway yields world record

    Last Sept. 10, Don Henson of Southaven went fishing at the Sardis Lake spillway for a catfish dinner, but instead ended up taking a bite out of a couple of record books.

    January 24, 2017 at 11:30am
    Sustaining good fishing will require forward thinking fisheries management.

    Global climate change

    We all have frustrations. Near the top of my list is the often-heard question: “Do you believe in climate change?”

    January 05, 2017 at 9:00am
    This 6-pound largemouth bass is a product of healthy reservoir habitat.

    Reservoir impairment

    Reservoirs — impounded rivers — in the southern United States provide much of the recreational fishing opportunities anglers enjoy.

    Unfortunately, most of those reservoirs were built between the 1930s and the 1970s, and they are aging rapidly.

    December 01, 2016 at 7:00am
    Slice a pool noodle the way you would a pineapple, ending up with several thumb-sized bait pieces that will stay on a hook while providing a medium for holding stink bait.

    Preparing for a different form of noodling

    The term “noodling” for catfish usually refers to the sport of grabbing catfish by hand, but at Lake Washington it takes on a different meanings.

    November 15, 2016 at 6:00am
    Don Drane of Madison holds up two fat Lake Washington channel cats, which were destined for a fish fry at a tail-gating party on a college football Saturday.

    Yo-yo regulations

    On June 23, the MDWFP instituted new regulations regarding yo-yo mechanisms used for fishing. 

    November 15, 2016 at 6:00am
    A channel catfish olfactory senses are nearly 10 times greater than those of a largemouth bass or rainbow trout, making stinkbaits an effective tool for catching them.

    Channel cats love a stinky sticky bait

    While many die hard catfish anglers make their own concoctions of stink baits, a tried and true favorite is a product called Sonny’s Super Sticky Channel Catfish Bait. The bait comes in either 15-ounce jars or 45-ounce tubs and is designed especially for catching channel catfish.

    November 15, 2016 at 6:00am
    Anglers can try their hand at homemade stinkbaits by trying this easy to make recipe.

    The No. 1 recipe for catfish stink bait

    Many family recipes are handed down from generation to generation. Some recipes make it to the Thanksgiving table while others, like this one from Robert “Kud” Stevenson of Tallulah, La., wind up on a hook. 

    November 15, 2016 at 6:00am
    Bighead carp grow to over 60 pounds.

    Asian carp update

    The term “Asian carp” refers to four species of carp native to the rivers of China and Southeast Asia. All are capable of growing larger than 60 pounds.

    Like the common carp, imported from Europe in the 1800s, the fish are in the minnow family.

    They’re big minnows.

    November 01, 2016 at 7:00am