How To Ice Fish for Yellow Perch

The Yellow Perch is a beautiful fish with vertical lines on their bodies. They appear more yellow than their European counterparts, with few red coloring around the fins. This type of fish has a great flavor and is relatively easy to catch in ponds.

If you’re planning to ice fish for Yellow Perch, here are the steps to do so.

  • Drill holes in the ice. Drill a hole anywhere in the pond, but preferably in the middle. However, be prepared to drill more than one hole. Afterward, clear them and remove the dug ice surrounding them.
  • Test the holes. Test if the spot you chose has yellow perch. If there isn’t any, don’t hesitate to look for other locations or to dig additional holes. For bait, you can use shrimp pieces, worms or minnows. As much as possible, use crappie rig for fishing. If a crappie rig is not available, you can improvise by tying two separate hooks on opposite sides of a line, with about 10-12 inches of space from each other. Drop your line until the bottom of the pond and reel it until taut so you’ll know if a yellow perch took the bait.
    However, don’t reel it in too high since yellow perch is known to settle in the bottom, as this is where they find their food. Though some yellow perch stray in shallow waters, these are smaller than those that can be caught at the bottom.
    If you are unable to catch any yellow perch after about fifteen minutes, prepare to move and drill new holes. If you see other fishermen in other sections that are able to catch perch, move in their immediate area without being too close.
  • Wait for a bite. If the line jerks, try to reel the fish in. Your objective is to position the fish right in the middle of the hole so you can reel it in. if you catch a yellow perch, then you may have found the best hole. More often than not, it means that there is a yellow perch school right beneath you as this is how they normally travel. Change your bait for shiners or small lures best for catching panfish and you may end up with a number of yellow perch to take home. Once you find that there are a lot of yellow perch in the area, imitate the behavior of yellow perch prey for better results. When setting down your bait, let it reach the bottom of the pond and leave it for a while. This is because the perch is used to getting their food right at the bottom of the lake. Afterward, take it up and jiggle it for a bit. Let it rest at the bottom again and repeat the action until a perch takes a bite.

Like ice fishing for other types of fish, catching yellow perch requires patience and discipline. Don’t give up if you’re unable to catch a lot. Just move around the area, drilling holes every few yards until you find the perfect spot.


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