Norfork Lake crappie sampling indicates excellent survival rates


According to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, the most recent angler surveys on Bull Shoals, Greers Ferry, and Norfork Lakes indicate crappie are the second most targeted species by anglers in these reservoirs. Recently sample nets were placed in the reservoirs and collected and allowed the commission to monitor and evaluate the changes in their abundance, growth, and condition over time. In addition, the data collected helped them assess whether the harvest regulations are adequate for these fisheries.

This year, the commission will be evaluating Norfork Lake’s crappie population, and focusing on Bennett Bayou and Pigeon Creek arms. The plan is to set led nets in each arm for 48 hours per month from September through November where the crappie will be measured and weighed. A subsample of crappie are kept and aged later while the remaining crappie are released.

A sampling completed in highlighted a large number of small crappie (5 to 6 inches; age-1 crappie), which indicates excellent survival of crappie spawned during last year’s high water event. These early results suggests crappie fishing should remain good for several years.

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