ANIMAL: Largemouth Bass Micropterus salmoides Type of Animal: Sunfish Habitat: Lakes, ponds, swamps, pool backwaters, creek backwaters, river backwaters, windblown shorelines, covered flats, steep drop-offs near creek beds, brush piles, tree stumps, shallow flat areas in/around coves, rocky-sandy bottom transition areas, sandy bottoms, rocky bottoms, shell bottoms, clay bottoms, gravel bottoms, mucky bottoms, weedy bottoms, streams, rivers, logs, under rocks, rock ledges, vegetation, man-made structures, deeper waters w/ submerged vegetation/submerged logs/brush/rocks, slow/still reservoirs, under lily-pads, grassy areas, docks, tires, under buildings, flooded timber, sunken trees, deeper backwaters near marinas, edges of weed lines, weed beds, slow-moving stream shorelines w/ vegetation/wood cover, areas w/ weeds/underwater vegetation/submerged trees, farm ponds, cliffs w/ uneven faces, shallow bays of large lakes w/ soft bottoms/stumps/extensive pondweed growth (especially cattails & waterlilies), underwater rock outcrops, slow-running/still waterways, estuaries, thrives in water temps of 35-92 F Location(s): Native to SE Canada, continental US from Texas eastward, & NE Mexico. Introduced/invasive in all continental US, throughout S Canada, Mexico, Hawaii, Caribbean islands, Central America, E Asia, Europe, much of Africa, Madagascar, Mauritius, Malaysia, Philippines, Iran, Colombia, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Guam, Fiji, New Caledonia, & Australia. Appearance: Large olive-green to greenish-gray fish w/ dark (sometimes black) blotches forming jagged horizontal stripe along each flank, largest of all the black bass species Food/Diet: Fish (including members of own species), crayfish, frogs, insects, salamanders, small waterbirds, insect larvae, zooplankton, worms, tadpoles, leeches, amphipods, copepods, water fleas, snakes, snails, shrimp, mice, bats, baby alligators, baby turtles, lizards, young birds Status in Wild: Stable Conservation: Not applicable Lifestyle: Adults solitary or in schools of 3-15 bass. Juveniles more social found in schools of up to 40. Fry stay in schools guarded by dad for 1-4 weeks. Additional Info: Called: Male Female Young: Fry/Fingerling Group: School Weight: Male: 4-5 lbs Female: 8-12 lbs Young: 0.5 lb Gestation: 5-10 days Life Span: 10-20 years Body Length: Male: 0.83-1.25 ft Female: 1.083-2.083 ft Young: 1.5 in Tail Length: 1.5 in, same for both sexes Main predators of adults are muskies, pike, crocodilians, walleye (often in fights to death w/ whoever dies 1st being eaten-these species frequently target each other’s young/juveniles), bald eagles, ospreys, hawks, large herons, bears, & large snapping turtles. Young/juveniles eaten by smaller snapping turtles, catfish, yellow perch, herons, kingfishers, water snakes, bass of own/other species, common carp, crappies, & American eels. Fun Fact(s): State fish of Georgia & Mississippi & state freshwater fish of Florida & Alabama. These fish have become highly invasive in many parts of world (especially once adulthood reached)-they prey on native wildlife & compete w/ native fish. Single female can lay up to 45,000 eggs a year & breed throughout her lifetime. These fish known as America’s favorite game fish & popular worldwide.