Spotted Bass: Micropterus punctulatus
Spotted bass are similar to largemouth bass, but unlike the largemouth, the spotted bass has scales on the base portion of the second dorsal fin; their first and second dorsal fins are clearly connected, and its upper jaw does not extend past the eye. A rectangular tooth patch on the tongue also helps distinguish the spotted bass from other black bass species such as the largemouth bass and shoal bass.
They prefer small to medium streams and rivers with clear, slow-moving water, and gravel or rock bottoms. Seldom found in natural lakes, and they do not enter brackish water.
Grow slower than largemouth bass and do not attain as large a size as other black bass.
State Record: 3.75 lbs.
Big Catch minimum: 16 inches or 2 lbs.
Fishing Tips and Facts: Strong fighters when caught on light tackle. Popular lures and baits include jigs, crankbaits, spinners, small plastic worms and crayfish.
Image Credit: Duane Raver, Jr.