There is an increasing interest in crappie fishing all over the world. It is a wonderful experience; many crappie fishing expeditions ends with wonderful stories. Crappies are delicious; they are a rich source of protein. Catching crappies is also easy for experienced anglers. It is common to find families including small children catching crappies with telescopic crappie fishing nets.
The best time to go fishing for crappies is in the spring season. Crappie fishing is also done during the spawning period when crappies come close to the shore. It is however important for crappie fishers to know about some common crappie diseases that affect crappies. With this knowledge, infestations can be quickly noticed.
Common Crappie Diseases
It is generally propagated that crappies found to be infected with diseases should not be consumed. Some common diseases known to affect the crappie species include:
- Viral Haemorrhagic Septicemia
This disease is caused by a viral infection. It predominantly affects the black crappie species. The infection may not be apparent in some fish at the early stages, but within a few days, the crappie will begin to hemorrhage externally and internally. Blood will be noticed coming out from the fins, eyes and the body. VHS is determined by laboratory testing of fish suspected to be infected with the virus. VHS is highly contagious so crappies found with the symptoms should be quickly taking for testing.
This is one of the common viral diseases which affect adult crappies. The symptoms of Lymphocystis include the appearance of tumors around the fins and gills of the fish. It is a contagious disease as the symptoms of Lymphocystis once observed in an area can be found on many crappies within the region. Crappies infected by Lymphocystis are however not known to pose any danger to human beings after consumption.
This disease is a caused by a bacterial infection. It is known to affect black and white crappies. The characteristic fungal infections are apparent on the crappie skin as reddish looking lesions. It is also however quite contagious, but crappies affected by Columnaris can still be consumed by humans.
4. Yellowish and Whitish cysts on Crappie skin
These blemishes are caused by parasites that latch on to the crappies. These spots appear like sodium deposits on the crappie skin and around the tails. They are however not a threat to the fish or human beings.
5. Black Spot Disease
This infection is also known as Neascus. It manifests on the crappies as black spots on the fish skin and the areas beneath the crappie. It is caused by parasites known as the Neascus spp. This condition is however not a threat to human health when the crappies are consumed.
6. Eye Fluke Invasion
The eye flukes are parasites that become attached to the eyes of crappies where they live off their hosts eventually causing blindness. In the case of an invasion, eye flukes can become a serious threat to the crappie population in a region.
Conclusion on Crappie Diseases
Anglers are always advised to observe the crappies they catch. Moreover, any abnormalities should be reported. The fisheries and labs to a large extent depend on the reports from angler’s asides other independent research studies.
Early detection of an infection can stop the spread of diseases. The anglers who have recently visited the lake will be shown how to wash their crappie nets and other tools to prevent the spread of the disease.