White Perch Fishing Tips


White perch are a species of fish native to the northeastern United States that have since moved to other parts of the country. They are a delicious fish, with sweet and tasty fillets that compel anglers to try to catch enough to make a meal. White perch live most of the time in schools, and an angler has a good chance to catch loads of them if she knows what she is doing.

Perch Hangouts

  • Look for white perch in rivers. Know what they look like before heading out to try to catch them. White perch are typically between 7 and 10 inches long, silvery and possess three sharp spines on their dorsal fin. In a river system, white perch typically will hang in the deeper and slower water. Coves, backwaters and places where the shallow waters flow into deeper areas are all favorite hangouts. Always check out a spot where a tree hangs over the river, as white perch will congregate there waiting for insects to fall off it and using it for shade in the summer months.

Fast Action

  • Utilize the type of tackle that will allow you to catch white perch and have good sport doing it. This includes a low-cost, light-spinning reel rigged with four-to-six pound monofilament line. Use a fast-action rod to allow you to feel the slightest nibble but still have enough strength to set the hook rapidly. Tie a No. 6 long shank hook on with one or two split shots about 1 1/2 feet from the hook, depending on how far you need to cast.

The Ultimate Bait

  • Make night crawlers your ultimate white perch bait. They are economical bait because you can catch them yourself on a moist warm evening on your own front lawn. Use just a small section of the worm when fishing for white perch. These fish will bite an entire night crawler off the hook with ease and avoid capture doing it. A smaller piece threaded onto the hook’s shank with just a little hiding the barb works much better. It forces the perch to bite close to the point of the hook and increases greatly your hook-to-miss ratio.


  • Try fishing for white perch with multiple fishing poles if your state regulations allow it. Rig them with your night crawlers and cast both out into an area of the river -- one far out and the other closer to shore. Lean them against a forked stick jammed into the ground and carefully monitor the lines. A tug on the line, the line suddenly going out on the surface of the water, or the rod tip twitching will alert you to a bite. Pick up the pole and set the hook. White perch will give a decent fight, zigzagging in the water as you reel them and they feel the hook in their mouth. Replace the worm if it is in bad shape and cast out again, targeting the area where most of the bites occur. You may have a hard time keeping up with this action when a good-sized school of white perch comes along.

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