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Whether targeted for fun or for the table, panfish please most anglers– especially lunker crappies and hand-sized bull bluegills. Fall is a great time to catch them, but with variables like changing vegetation, cooling weather, turnover, and fall bait migrations, how do you crack the code for consistent success?

We asked four of the nation’s top panfish specialists five questions about fall crappie and bluegill fishing. Their answers will help anyone become a more successful fall panfish angler.

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The swimbait is a lure type that has gone from trophy hunting bass anglers to something used for many different species, including walleye. They come in all shapes and sizes and can be fished all year long, making them some of the most versatile lures used today.

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New Tackle for 2022

Everyone is throwing bladed jigs these days so sometimes you need to give the fish a different look and sound.

The downsized Chatterbait MiniMax has a downscaled hex-blade and other componentry, but it has the punch to handle big, tough smallmouth, spotted and largemouth bass.

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Featured Videos

KVD: How to Manage Fall Turnover on Northern Lakes Kevin VanDam: Clear Water Spinnerbait Tactics
KVD: How to Manage Fall Turnover on Northern Lakes Kevin VanDam: Clear Water Spinnerbait Tactics
KVD: How to Trick Those Fall Cruisers Zona: Which Docks are Best?
KVD: How to Trick Those Fall Cruisers Zona: Which Docks are Best?
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Side Notes

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Monitor fishing and hunting news from the Michigan DNR, Indiana DNR and national sources. If it's happening in the outdoors, you can read it here.

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By Louie Stout

Ethanol Issues Keep Outboard Boat Mechanics Busy

If your outboard engine runs and stops or not at all, Andy Peterson probably knows why.

Too much Ethanol in the fuel. Your car may run fine on it, but outboards…not so much.

“We’re seeing numerous problems because of ethanol,” said the co-owner of Starboard Choice Marine in Edwardsburg, Mich. “It’s a huge marine issue throughout the country.”

And he’s not kidding.


By Louie Stout

Rattlers Thrived on South Bend Southwest SideOur rattlesnake column a few weeks ago has triggered some interesting conversations.

If you missed that story, it noted how the 2000-plus acre Ed Lowe Foundation property east of Cassopolis harbors one of the Midwest’s largest populations of Massasauga rattlesnakes.

More than 800 have been documented on the property over the past seven years. The Massasauga is the only poisonous snake in Michigan and northern Indiana. However, populations have dwindled rapidly due to habitat loss and the snake may be placed on the national endangered species list.

After that story ran, reader Ken Price of Granger dropped us a note pointing out that rattlesnakes were once prominent around South Bend.

In fact, a large population living on the city’s southwest side some 60 years ago created quite a stir and led to a public demonstration demanding the city eradicate the snakes.

Price recalls a huge rattler colony in a large field adjacent to a trailer park once located on the south side of the old Lincoln Way near the Michiana airport. The field ran all the way to the edge of Mayflower Road.

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