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Getting Started with Yellow Perch

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    Getting Started with Yellow Perch

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    Type of water:
    Sandhills lakes, Merritt Reservoir, cool-water lakes in northern Nebraska

    Shallow and deep water flats

    Peak feeding = 68 degrees; active = 58-73 degrees; spawning = 44-54 degrees.

    Food preference:
    Fish, insects, worms

    (from Daryl Bauer) Yellow perch will feed on a variety of aquatic insects, zooplankton, small fish and other "critters."

    Time of Day:
    Daylight hours

    Earthworms, waxworms, minnows

    (from Daryl Bauer) A variety of live bait rigs fished with crawlers, small leeches and small minnows will work. Crayfish tails on a jig are a great bait to catch yellow perch.

    Artificial alternatives:

    (from Daryl Bauer) A variety of small jigs, crankbaits, spinners and spoons ...will catch lots of yellow perch.

    Medium to light-action rod/reel

    (from Daryl Bauer) Light spinning and spin-casting tackle

    Member suggestions/tips:
    (from Mr. Cold) While suggesting January ice fishing at the Valentine Refuge lakes with a waxworm/teardrop rig or "flicker/spinner" is the best way to catch perch, "we've also had luck in the spring/summer using nightcrawlers, although using a 1/2 crawler on a walleye spinner rig probably works better since you tend to lose the tail a lot if you use a full crawler with perch around."

    (from Daryl Bauer) For yellow perch from open water the best time of year probably is early spring. The perch will move into shallow water to spawn in flooded vegetation or remnants of last year's aquatic vegetation. If you can find a spot that funnels the perch into an area, for example a necked-down area at the mouth of a shallow bay, you might intercept lots of perch moving back and forth.

    After the spawn, yellow perch will disperse from their shallow spawning areas. Perch like flats and will roam both shallow weedy flats and deep water flats. As weed growth develops they are most likely to roam weedy flats and small yellow perch may stay "in the weeds" the rest of the summer and into fall. Big perch may be more likely to venture into deeper water and roam deep water flats. Even though those fish are roaming flats, structural elements like channels, points, humps and underwater islands may concentrate roaming fish making them easier to find and catch.

    Yellow perch generally are not hard to catch. If they are in the area they will often follow and nip at baits and lures intended for much larger fish. If that is the case some down-sizing should put those fish on the end of the line.
    �I think every happy memory plucks a hair from your head; if you see an old bald guy, he�s probably had a great life.� �-Red Green