Jump to content
John Bugbee

Crayfish Color in New England

Recommended Posts

I was thinking of picking up some soft bait craws for the Spring and I got to thinking , I really have no idea what color they are in Spring time here in southern new england? 

 

Additionally,  I dont know when they molt , what colors do they turn into and what times of year?

 

If anyone knows the answer to this question I would appreciate it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've always wondered this as well. What I can tell you, from turning over rocks, fish puke etc... is most of the craws I see are "green pumpkin" colored. Sometimes they will have mottled orange mixed in.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i know through the south and midwest a crank with either an orange or red sides and belly is a great fish catcher just because in all water clarities its a visible craw looking bait. Up north i wouldn't expect much difference other than maybe going with a more muted color in clearer water but in stained go with a darker red or orange. In soft plastics for me at least you cant beat " Alabama craw" or a similar color which is generally a green pumpkin top with orangish red on the bottom. I catch fish on that color really well from February to post spawn. another color to not sleep on is a pumpkinseed worm or craw from zoom its just a brownish kinda light color that could very well imitate a craw in clear water. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dont know about New England but here craws come in a lot of colors .  I have used a lot of colors and they all have worked . Black/blue , black/chartreuse , browns , greens , purples. For smallmouths I like lures with long skinny antennae for largemouth they all work . 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mostly all the crayfish i 've seen walking around or in fish's throat have been the typical brown /Orange. However I did find at a launch once in april a dead craw that was mostly black with small blue spots and sky blue under sides of the claws. And later that same season [June I think ]at a different pond i found one that was green pumpkin-ish.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Crawfish in general, not just New England are hard to "match the hatch", so to speak. They seem to go through different phases. I stick to greens, browns, black & blues for the most part. Once you get bit you can pretty much dial it in from there.

 

Now that you mention it, that would be an interesting study.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are literally dozens of different species (and colors) of craws out there. You best bet is to try different colors and see what works best on your lakes. Chances are, there are crayfish in your waters of multiple different colors and hues. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Check with UMass agricultural department. They have all kinds of studies being done by students all the time. At the very least, they can direct you to the proper agency to contact for specific information.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Crestliner2008 said:

Check with UMass agricultural department. They have all kinds of studies being done by students all the time. At the very least, they can direct you to the proper agency to contact for specific information.

Another option is to ask the Department of Fish and Game.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There was a site which showed the different species of crayfish per state.

 

Allen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great post man. A lot of good info. Many color choices, I don’t think you have to be dead on with color choice. I’m in the North East with you. Another color do not hesitate to use is a grey color. My favorite craw of all time is the Guido Bugs. I still have some left. Zoom craws work as well. 

 

A tube is a mimic of a crawfish. Your color choices are greater with tubes. Just another suggestion if you are trying to match color.

 

My Opinion on those super life like plastic craw, they don’t work as well as other creature baits and craw patterns out there. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is so much great info here, thank you to all, much appreciated!!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Early season when they molt they tend to be red/orange.  I’d try something like this.   But the only way to really know is to catch one.  Go out the night before and scan any rocky shoreline.  

63189BDB-7676-4EA2-95F5-8518C08BD8B3.png

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  I've found many different colors available. It really depends on what waterbody your on up here. Greens, browns even blacks  Ive purposely sought out and caught many crayfish, due to me being a jig and pig fan, and I tie my own jigs. Its like a quest at every new lake I fish, to seek out what they look like,.. I can honestly say there really isn't a prevailing color, so to speak. Not just color though, size and shape differs too,..slim and slender or stout and fat, long pincers, short ones etc. some so big they look like short lobsters. Kinda depends on where you are. what lake, pond, river.   

 I'm minutes from Plymouth Ma, there's a long history in this area, alot has gone on, river dams, bogs, old farms fertilizers, chemicals, etc. This may have had some impact seeing that their environments were drastically changed so much. Some of the larger watershed areas will have similar bugs, but most around here? vary,

 Like this,.... I'll use a example pond Putnamville res. in Danvers.

 By the Dams rip rap you will catch a stout darker brown colored crayfish with some dark green and a few orange spots on the big roundish pincers,...flip it over and its mostly that dark brown fading into a light sand color, over in the weed beds you'll catch a much lighter colored skinny bug almost a sandy color mixing with orange and blueish highlights, on its thin short pincers, in the extreme northwest corner theres scattered rock flats, kinda in between the other two,... medium sized but the color more mimics the surrounding rocks color. so, i guess you could say its a brown pond. Couple towns away in Lynn,.. sluice pond is a green pond. In between these two ponds there's Browns pond in south Peabody, they are mostly blue in there

 Best bet?, Ya cant go wrong with black

  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It can vary quite a bit depending on the time of year and species of crayfish.  Most often, they are a muted green pumpkin/brown color/olive color.  With that as a base, certain times of year they have orange and/or red highlights.  The amount of orange or red depends on the season and species, from what I can gather.  

 

In practice I’ll use that base GP/Olive color with varying amounts of red/orange accent colors in the early spring and then again in the fall.  During the summer I stick to pretty much the green/brown/black colors.  Not exactly a scientific approach, but it seems to be backed by reasonable results.  

 

Ive found that action and size of the soft plastic craw is a bigger player than color when it comes to getting bites.  The size and amount of “flapping” that the claws do seems to be More important than matching any specific colors.  This is the case with most soft plastic baits in my experience, action first, then size, color is third on the list for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The ones I mostly see are green and black! 

Walk around the shore line at night and look for craws. Some places I didn’t think had craws, had craws! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing forum

    fishing

    fishing forum

    fishing rods

    fishing poles

    fishing

    fishing reels

    fishing poles

    fishing reels

    fishing

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×