Fishing action heats up statewide as the outdoors are always open!

The Outdoors Are Always Open, and now is a great time to get outdoors with a variety of tackle and have some fun fishing in Oklahoma. (Skylar St.Yves/ODWC)

With recent rainfall and warmer weather, fishing for crappie and white bass is heating up statewide. These species are beginning their annual spawning routines by moving into shallower water, making them easily accessible to bank anglers.

Are you looking for activities to keep your family from going stir crazy in this time of social distancing? Grab the rods, hit your local waters, and fill your dinner plates and freezer with some tasty fish. The Outdoors Are Always Open!

During these trying times, more than ever, we want to help you and your family have fishing success. Not only is fishing a great way to practice social distancing, but it is therapeutic for the mind. It’s a fun-filled activity that creates lasting memories for families and an easy way to provide a meal.

While each body of water may differ in the best lures or baits to use, here are a few tried-and-true tips that are good across the board for catching fish on artificial lures. Of course, a live minnow fished at depth with a weight or with a bobber is an excellent alternative to any of these artificial lure suggestions:

White bass: In lakes, focus your efforts at the mouths of creeks, streams and rivers where they flow into the lake and any public access points along those creeks, streams and rivers. Try Rat-L-Traps in gold or red patterns, sassy shad in pearl white, shallow- or medium-diving lipped crankbaits in blue-yellow-orange or green-orange-yellow or chartreuse-blue-white patterns, and small white bucktail jigs.

White Crappie, Black Crappie: Rip rap along bridges or the dam, shallow coves, creek mouths, and shallow flooded timber or brush are good places to try. In these areas, use naturally colored tubes, white and bluegrass baby shad, and small naturally colored swimbaits or inline spinners.

When you are enjoying Outdoor Oklahoma, please follow all federal and state health guidelines regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. Among those, keep a fishing rod’s length between you and the next person, and do not congregate in groups of 10 or more.

We are happy to answer any specific questions you might have about fishing. Just call Fishing Coordinator Skylar St.Yves at (405) 990-9753 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays or send email to skylar.styves@odwc.ok.gov.

For complete fishing information, consult the current Oklahoma Hunting and Fishing Regulations Guide found online at wildlifedepartment.com, on the Go Outdoors Oklahoma free mobile app for Apple or Android devices, or in print across the state wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold.

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