Guadalupe Bass, June 2015, Fish of the Month!
We're now in the realm of the North American basses (the genus Micropterus).
Texas spotted bass, Black bass, Guadalupe spotted bass
8 to 12 inches
½ to 1 pound
Distinguishing Field Marks:
(See the illustration.)
The dark lateral band is broken into blotches.
The mouth is of moderate size with its upper jaw extending backward only to the mid-point of the eye.
There is a dark spot on the rear edge of the gill covers.
There are small scales at the base of the second dorsal, caudal, and anal fins.
North American Range:
Map to the right shows approximate range in North America.
This Sunfish's diet begins with the very young feeding on small aquatic invertebrates, especially insects. Young adults feed mainly on small fishes. Older adults' diets, once again, are mainly invertebrates.
The Guadalupe bass inhabits a relatively small range in eastern Texas. It's preference is for habitats with clear moving water and is found rarely, if ever, in still water.
The spawning behavior of this species begins as early as March and continues into early summer and is typical of the genus (Micropterus) in that the males assume responsibility for nest site selection, nest building, driving the spent female parent from the nest, aerating the incubating eggs, and guarding the new-born young for a short period.
Fly Fishing for Guadalupe Bass:
We're including this species as a courtesy to anglers who might be visiting its small range and either intend to fish for it or catch one incidentally and need to identify it. We also anticipate the possibility of receiving a few angry letters calling us on the carpet for revealing the habitats of this excellent game fish.
In any event, here's some of what you'll need to know to be a successful Guadalupe bass angler.
Within its limited Texas range, look for Guadalupe bass in 3 watersheds on the northern and eastern Edwards Plateau, the Colorado, the upper Guadalupe, and the San Antonio. Outside of that region, this bass lives in the lower Colorado and Nueces Rivers.
Light fly-rod tackle, say 3 to a maximum of 5 weight, is recommended for presenting small light offerings to Guadalupe bass. You might even think of this member of the Sunfish tribe as a bass made for the dry-fly fisher.
Although small, the Guadalupe bass is an excellent game fish
Significance to Humans:
Minimal, except in Texas where the Guadalupe bass is the sate fish.