Largemouth Bass

Micropterus salmoides

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The Largemouth Bass is a large freshwater gamefish indigenous (native) to North America. It has a stout body with olive green coloring broken by a horizontal stripe with jagged edges along the the flank. It has a deeply notched dorsal fin, the anterior part of which is topped by nine to eleven spines. The prominent lower jaw juts out much further than the upper. Adults can grow up to 30 inches or 76 cm.

Younger fish hunt smaller fish, shrimp and insects. Adults feed on fish, snails, frogs, snakes, salamanders and occasionally small mammals.

It is the official fish of several U.S. states.

Range and Habitat

This fish prefers freshwater lakes, ponds and rivers where they are generally the top predator. They congregate under logs, rocky ledges and among aquatic vegetation.

Native populations of the fish occur only in the eastern United States, although it has been introduced to other parts of the country due to its popularity with sportsmen. Largemouth Bass fishing is a common recreational activity in western Oregon, along the Columbia River and various sloughs in the Willamette Valley. They are widely sought by anglers due to their reputation for being fierce fighters when on the hook.

Conservation Status