THE LARGEMOUTH BASS
Largemouth bass grow 4 to 6 inches during their first year, 8 to 12 inches in two years, 16 inches in three years. Largemouth bass are green with dark blotches that form a horizontal stripe along the middle of the fish on either side. The underside ranges in color from light green to almost white. They have a nearly divided dorsal fin with the anterior portion containing nine spines and the posterior portion containing 12 to 13 soft rays. Their upper jaw reaches far beyond the rear margin of the eye. Except for humans, adult largemouth bass are the top predators in the aquatic ecosystem. Fry feed primarily on zooplankton and insect larvae. At about two inches in length they become active predators. Adults feed almost exclusively on other fish and large invertebrates such as crayfish. Larger fish prey upon smaller bass.
LARGEMOUTH BASS HISTORY
Spawning begins in the spring when water temperatures reach about 60°F.
Males build the nests in two to eight feet of water.
Females lay between 2,000 to 43,000 eggs.
The young, called fry, hatch in five to ten days.
Largemouth Bass lifespan is on average 16 years.
Largemouth bass hide among plants, roots or limbs to strike their prey.
Largemouth bass seek protective cover such as logs, rock ledges, vegetation, and man-made structures.
LARGEMOUTH BASS DISTRIBUTION
Largemouth bass were originally distributed throughout most of what is now the United States east of the Rockies, including many rivers and lakes in Texas, with limited populations in southeastern Canada and northeastern Mexico. Because of its importance as a game fish, the species has been introduced into many other areas worldwide, including nearly all of Mexico and south into Central and South America.