Smallmouth Bass (Micropterus dolomieu) a.k.a. Smallmouth; Smallie; bronzeback; brown bass; redeye; mountain trout
Identification: Bronze to dark olive dorsally; pale yellow to white ventrally; black mottling on back with vertical bars on side. Can reach a length of 69cm. Young can be identified by their tri-colored tail (yellow, black, white). Distribution: Occurs throughout most of Iowa. Absent from SW 1/3 of the state, and most abundant NE portion of the state. Fishbase Pictures Iowa DNR
Distinguishing from Similar Species: Smallmouth bass – mouth doesn’t extend past eye; tooth patch on tongue; no mid-lateral stripe; has vertical bars on side; YOY have tri-colored tail. Largemouth bass – mouth extends well past the eye; no tooth patch on tongue; broad black mid-lateral stripe; no vertical bars on side; found state-wide. Spotted Bass – mouth doesn’t extend past eye; has tooth patch on tongue; black mid-lateral stripe; no vertical bars on side; YOY have tri-colored tail; in IA it is only found in Lake Macbride. Fishbase Pictures Google Images Fishbase Pictures
Habitat: Clear to slightly turbid streams and rivers, over gravel or boulder laden substrate; shallow rocky areas of lakes and reservoirs (reefs, windblown points, etc.). Diet: Young of year (YOY) start on microcrustaceans, as growth proceeds diet mainly consists of aquatic insects, and finally graduates to macroinvertabrates and fishes. Insectivorous as larvae, and mainly piscivorous as adults. Greg Gelwicks Google Images Google Images Google Images Fishbase Pictures
Reproduction: Spawning occurs at temperatures between 16-21°C in waters ranging in depth from 1-6m depending upon clarity. Male fans a bed for female to lay eggs. Female may lay eggs in several different nests; number of eggs varies between 2,000-10,000. Male stays on bed to guard eggs and young. Conservation Status: Common in IA. Gamefish status. Length and bag limits exist in IA to conserve sport fishery.
Economic/Recreational Value: Important gamefish, and provides an additional sport fishery in IA. Ecological Importance: Important predator; quite often the top carnivore in many of Iowa’s small interior streams. Google Images Google Images
References Becker, G.C. 1983. Fishes of Wisconsin. University of Wisconsin Press. Madison, Wisconsin. p801-808. Fishbase, A Global Information System on Fishes. Available at http://www.fishbase.se/home.htm Nov. 2004. Gilbert, C.R. and J.D. Williams. 2002. National Audubon Society Field Guide to Fishes, Revised Ed., North America. Knopf, New York. p349-352. Google Images. Available at http://www.google.com/imghp?hl=en&tab=wi&q= Oct. 2004. Harlan, J.R., E.B. Speaker, and J. Mayhew. 1987. Iowa Fish and Fishing. Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Des Moines, Iowa. P146-147. Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Iowa DNR Fish and Fishing. available at http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/index.html Oct. 2004. McClane, A.J. 1978. McClane’s Field Guide to Freshwater Fishes of North America. Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, New York. P136-149. Page, L.M. and B.M. Burr. 1991. Petersen Field Guides, Freshwater Fishes. Houghton Mifflin, Boston.
Blackie Crappie Pomoxis nigromaculatus Family: Centrarchidae Natural History of Fishes
Black Crappie • Identification: Extremely compressed body , sharp dip over nose, 7-8 dorsal spines, large mouth extending under eye, gray-green on dorsal, silver sides with black mottling, 8-12 inches in length
Black Crappie • Range: east to mid-west United States, with exception of the NE and southern Florida • Distribution: spread through the entire state of Iowa
Black Crappie • Diet: small fish, aquatic insects and their larvae • Habitat: lakes, ponds, backwaters; living among aquatic vegetation in clear waters.
Black Crappie • Reproduction: spawn May-June; male constructs nest by fanning out sand in medium depth areas with lots of vegetation; female lays 5,000 to 30,000 eggs. • Economic importance: huge game fish, good to eat. • Not considered threatened or endangered
References Iowa Department of Natural Resources. 2004. http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/bc-card.html Ohio Department of Natural Resources. 2004. http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/Wildlife/Fishing Page, L.M., and B.M. Burr. 1991. pp. 259. Freshwater Fishes of North America North of Mexico. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston.
White Crappie(Pomoxis annularis)ByCurt Kemmerer http://www.landbigfish.com/fish/fish.cfm?ID=13
Identification • Deep, laterally compressed body; “hump-backed” • Sharp dip over eye • Dark vertical bands or mottling over silver body • Six dorsal spines, beginning at midpoint of body • Average 10-12 inches, seldom exceed two pounds http://www.landbigfish.com/fish/fish.cfm?ID=13
Similar Species White Crappie (Pomoxis annularis) Black Crappie (Pomoxis nigromaculatus)
Distribution • Very common, native species • Found statewide in lakes and larger rivers
Found in creeks, rivers, ponds, and lakes Found around submerged objects May be found at varying depths up to 15 feet Zooplankton (1st year) Insects Small fish Crustaceans Habitat Diet http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/wildlife/fishing/aquanotes-fishid/wcrappie.htm
Reproduction • Reaches maturity at two to three years • Spawning occurs in Spring (April-June) at approximately 560 F water temp. • Male builds nest in substrate of shallow water • Female lays up to 20,000 eggs in nest • Male guards eggs; hatch in three to seven days • Species average life-span of seven to eight years
Conservation Status • Abundant in Iowa • No current threats to existence Economic/Recreational Importance • Very popular sport fish • Popular food fish (very tasty!!) Ecological Importance • Preys upon small fish and invertebrates • Prey to larger fish • Can tolerate turbid waters; not an important indicator or “key” ecological species
References • Iowa Department of Natural Resources. IowaDNR Fish and Fishing. Available at http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/whc-card.html. • White Crappie Fish Identification. Available at http://www.landbigfish.com/fish/fish.cfm?ID=13. • Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Life History Notes: White Crappie. Available at http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/wildlife/fishing/aquanotes-fishid/wcrappie.htm.
Ambloplites rupestris • Characteristics • Olive colored with brassy reflections and dark molting along the sides • It has a whitish belly and breast • There are 6 spines in the anal fin and 12 in the dorsal • Seldom exceeds 10 inches http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/nrb-card.html
Ambloplites rupestris • Distribution • Generally found in the interior streams of Northeast Iowa • Is rarely found in the upper Des Moines and Mississippi rivers and large natural lakes • Habitat • Vegetated and brushy stream margins or rocky and vegetated margins of lakes • Most common in clear, silt-free rocky streams http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/rockbass.html
Ambloplites rupestris • Diet • Aquatic insects, minnows, and other small fish • Reproduction • Nest building begins by the male when water temperature reaches 65-75 F, usually between May and June • Female deposits ~5000 eggs in the nest • After hatching, young are found in quiet water areas protected from waves and strong currents
Ambloplites rupestris • Conservation Status • Common and native to Iowa • Economic and Recreational Importance • Important in recreational fishing • Ecological Importance • Provides a stable prey base for larger fish • Helps to keep its food base in ecological check
Ambloplites rupestris • References • Eddy, S. and J.C. Underhill. 1978. How to Know the Freshwater Fishes. 3rd Edition. McGraw-Hill, Boston. • Iowa Department of Natural Resources. 1994. IowaDNR Fish and Fishing. http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/iafish.html. August 2004. • Page, L.M. and B.M. Burr. 1991. Freshwater Fishes of North America North of Mexico. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston.
Warmouth Bass Lepomisgulosus Identification: -Warmouth have a thick, oblong body. Large mouth with the upper jaw extending to or beyond the middle of the eye. dark olive-brown color, mottled with dark brown blotches over the body. dark colored stripes extending from the eye to the opercle Warmouth have only three anal fin spines (rock bass have six). Florida Fisheries
Warmouth Bass • Distribution: • Warmouth are found from the Atlantic to Texas, excluding the Canadian shield and the Appalachians. • Habitat: • They prefer weedy lakes, sluggish streams, oxbows, marshes and ponds. Iowa DNR Ohio DNR
Warmouth Bass • Diet: • Crayfish, shrimp, insects and small fishes • Reproduction: • Warmouths are solitary nesters • Nests are found over a wide range of water depths. adjacent to submerged objects. • They spawn between April and August. • Females may produce 3,000 to 23,000 eggs.
Warmouth Bass • Conservation status: • Not in any danger, open all year • Recreational Value: • The warmouth is one of the more easily caught sunfish. They strike hard, frequently breaking the surface of the water. • Ecological Importance: • Widely stocked
Warmouth Bass • Other: • Common names: warmouth sunfish, goggle eye • Most of its feeding is done in the morning, as it seems to sleep at night. The Virtual Aquarium
References • Iowa DNR http://www.iowadnr.com • Fish and Fishing Maynard Reece, Meredith press, NY 1963 • Ohio DNR http://www.dnr.state.oh.us
Bluegill (Lepomis machrochirus) Other names - sunperch, blue sunfish, copperbelly, copperhead, bream, coppernose bream, redbreasted sunfish, yellowbelly, bluemouth sunfish, baldface, plumb granny, pumpkinseed, pond perch, roach
Bluegill (Lepomis machrochirus) • Identification • Deep, slab-sided with small mouth • Dark, olive colored back and sides, yellow to reddish underneath • Usually has dark vertical bars on sides and blueish gill cover and chin • No radiating lines from eye like Warmouth • Black, flexible tip at rear of gill cover, no red spot on it like Redear sunfish • Breast usually yellow to reddish • Upper jaw does not reach as far back as eye • 10 spines in un-notched dorsal fin. Iowa DNR
Bluegill (Lepomis machrochirus) • Distribution • Most abundant of all sunfish in IA • Found in virtually all waters • Most abundant in ponds and lakes • Not commonly found in western streams • Found in most interior rivers, very abundant in backwaters of the Mississippi. Iowa DNR
Bluegill (Lepomis machrochirus) • Diet • Zooplankton when young • Aquatic insects as adults • Will also supplement algae and other aquatic life in the scarcity of insects • Argulus, or Fish Lice have been found in stomach contents indicating that bluegill may perform a cleaning function on heavily parasitized fish • Reproduction • Late May to early August, esp. around the first of June • Water temp usually 21 – 27 degrees C • Males build saucer-shaped nests in 30 – 130cm of water, guard them heavily • Nest in colonies: up to 50 nests in 25 m radius • Females lay eggs in several nests • Finer substrates yield more fry: average 64,000 in fine sand and gravel • Usually reproduce in their second year
Bluegill (Lepomis machrochirus) • Conservation Status: • Very abundant, not threatened in this state • Economic/recreational value: • Popular panfish, easy to catch, hard fighters, good eating • Ecological Importance: • Very important forage for larger fish. • High reproduction rates allow them to take over ponds, stunting growth
Bluegill (Lepomis machrochirus) • Other Info: • Usually average around 20cm (8”) • Can reach 30 cm and weigh up to 1 kg. • Iowa record is 32.7cm (12-7/8 in.) and 1.42 kg (3 lb, 2 oz.) • Size varies greatly with population density • World Record: 2.01kg (4 lbs, 7 oz.) AL LandBigFish.com IL DNR
References: Lepomis machrochirus Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Illinois Fishes. Available at: http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/education/kids/KIDSCONS/Fall1999/ILfish.htm. November 2004. Iowa Department of Natural Resources. IowaDNR Fish and Fishing: Bluegill. Available at: http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/blg-card.html. November 2004. LandBigFish.com. 2004. Bluegill. Available at: http://www.landbigfish.com/fish/fish.cfm?ID=14. November 2004. Mayhew, J. 1987. Iowa Fish and Fishing. Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Des Moines Iowa. Available at: http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/bluegill.html. November 2004. Page, L.M. and B.M. Burr. 1991. Freshwater Fishes of North America North of Mexico. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston.
Identification: body green-shaded with a broad, continuous dark stripe along each side; belly white to yellowish; dorsal fin almost completely separated between spiny and soft portion and lower jaw extends past the gold-colored eye; commonly 12-16 inches; state record 10lb. 12oz. Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides)Chris Steffen Iowa DNR Distribution: statewide; nearly Global Habitat: lakes, ponds, quiet rivers; usually found around structure Pennsylvania FBC
Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides) Diet: insects, fish, crayfish, frogs; occasionally ducks, snakes, mice Reproduction: the male creates a nest; female lays 2,000-43,000 eggs; male protects nest and young for several days after hatching Auburn FIsheries Conservation Status: very common USDA
Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides) Economic/Recreational value: one of the most popular game fish in Iowa and the US; generates millions through tackle sales, fishing trips, tournaments Abtlures.com Ecological Importance: top piscivore in most Iowa ponds and lakes Ohio History Central ESPN
References: Micropterus salmoides Eddy, S. and J.C. Underhill. 1978. How to Know the Freshwater Fishes. 3rd Edition. McGraw-Hill, Boston. 215 pp. Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Fishes of Iowa. Available at http://www.iowadnr.com/fish/iafish/lmb- card.html. November 2004. Page, L.M. and B.M. Burr. 1991. Freshwater Fishes of North America North of Mexico. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston. 432 pp. Pflieger, W. L. 1997. The Fishes of Missouri, Revised Edition. Missouri Department of Conservation, Jefferson City Missouri. Texas Parks and Wildlife. Texas Freshwater Fishing. Available at http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/fish/infish/ species/lmb/lmb.htm Ohio History Central. Fish. Largemouth Bass. Available at http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org/ohc/nature/animals /fish/nlrgmouthbass.shtml
Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) By Kelly Andersen Identification: Large mouth, body laterally compressed, short, rounded pectoral fins, yellow to white margin on the ear flap, 10 spines in dorsal fin. Color: Blue-green back and sides, white to yellow belly, black spot on posterior base of dorsal and anal fin, yellow-orange margins on dorsal, caudal, and anal fin, emerald and yellow streaks on head. (Green Sunfish) Virginia Fish and Wildlife (Bluegill)
Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) Distribution: Native to the Central and Eastern U.S., but have been introduced over much of the U.S. Most wide-ranging sunfish in Iowa Iowa DNR
Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) Habitat: Quiet and backwaters of streams, lakes and ponds. Diet: YOY- zooplankton, aquatic insects Adults - young fish or minnows, insects, crayfish Iowa DNR
Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) Reproduction: Sexually mature at about 2 years, males build nest when water reaches 70 degrees F, usually in June. Nest in colonies near shore, prefer sand or gravel bottom, if limited space nests will be very close together, females lay 2,000-10,000 eggs per year, males stay with the nest until fry are free swimming (usually 6-7 days) Conservation: N/A considered common to abundant in their habitat. www.thejump.net/id/green-sunfish.htm
Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) Economic/recreational: sport fish, easily caught on many types of baits, rarely exceed 6-7 in. State Record: 2 lbs 1oz. from a farm pond. Ecological important: important food source for other larger sport fish. Other Common Names: Shade perch, black perch, slicks, ricefield slick, mud bass, rubber-tail, bluespotted sunfish, pond perch, green perch, sand bass, sunfish floridafisheries.com