Trap nets were evaluated as sampling gear for black crappie (Pomoxis nigromaculatus) in 4,900-ha Lake Wylie, North Carolina and South Carolina. Compared with a creel survey, cove sampling with rotenone, and spring electrofishing, trap nets were the most efficient and cost-effective gear used for capturing black crappie at Lake Wylie. Age and size structure of black crappie captured in trap nets were similar to that harvested by anglers during the same season. Trap net catch rates (number per net set) also appeared to reflect densities of black crappie in Lake Wylie. Biases were related to sampling season and to mesh sizes of the trap nets used. Catch rates of large (2:250 mm total length) black crappie in spring were significantly higher than those observed in fall, and catch rates of small (<250 mm total length) black crappie in fall were significantly higher than those observed in spring. Although the same size classes were captured, more large black crappie were captured in nets with 2.5-cm bar mesh than in nets with 1.9-cm bar mesh, and generally, more small black crappie were captured in nets with 1.9-cm bar mesh than in nets with 2.5-cm bar mesh.