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Sunfish ID
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veteran-fish
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Joined: 19 Apr 2008
Location: Tahlequah, OK

PostPosted: 2008.04.19(Sat)21:36    Post subject: Sunfish ID Reply with quote

Hi,
I am having trouble identifying these sunfish. The first three are all the same fish. The last one is a different species(fish).








Here's the different fish-




Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks. Smile
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Slimy
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Joined: 20 Nov 2007

PostPosted: 2008.04.19(Sat)21:42    Post subject: Reply with quote

They all look like bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus).
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UncleWillie
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Joined: 26 Nov 2007
Location: Georgia, USA

PostPosted: 2008.04.20(Sun)9:09    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okie Dokie. I think you probably have a hybrid in your first few pictures. The eyespot on its soft dorsal says "bluegill", but not the white margin on its opercular lobe. I keep wanting to say its a bluegill x warmouth hybrid (L. gulosus) Those dark bands on its cheeks also makes me want to say that. (Non-hybrid warmouth have an eye spot on both the soft dorsal and soft anal fins).
For your last picture, the soft dorsal and anal are hard to see, but they look quite long. It, too, has a white margin on its opercular lobe, but different markings on its cheeks and body. It looks to be a dollar sunfish (L. marginatus). But I could be mistaken - it wouldn't be a long shot for it to be in Oklahoma, but they usually stay in Gulf and Atlantic drainages.
I hope some of that made sense. Also, could you tell us where you got them (what river/lake, type of habitat, etc.) - this might help narrow it down. Hybrids are always so tricky.
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veteran-fish
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Joined: 19 Apr 2008
Location: Tahlequah, OK

PostPosted: 2008.04.20(Sun)15:11    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got these in Fort Worth, Texas. They both came from the same pool, and the pool was formed from two streams merging together. I'm not sure what the name of the stream is, but it runs through Foster Park.

Here it is on Google Maps- http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&hl=en&geocode=&saddr=&daddr=32.691789,-97.38255&mra=mi&mrsp=0&sz=19&jsv=107&sll=32.69178,-97.38252&sspn=0.001648,0.0025&layer=c&ie=UTF8&ll=32.691805,-97.382322&spn=0.001648,0.0025&t=h&z=19&cbll=32.691894,-97.382059

It is the "B"

I think they are hybrids, because from research I did on my own they didn't match any of the pictures I could find. Also, the pond was full of fish of all sizes, and I think it was overpopulated.

Thanks for the help. Smile
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Butch
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Joined: 27 Mar 2008
Location: United States

PostPosted: 2008.04.20(Sun)15:30    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first sunfish are green/bluegill hybrid. They can reach more than 4 pounds in good conditions. The population of green/bluegill hybrids (hatchery strains) are 94% males with very few fertile females. Don't see any warmouth in it.

The second one are possibly dollar sunfish as it has red marks on anal fins. But it is not hybrid.
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UncleWillie
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Joined: 26 Nov 2007
Location: Georgia, USA

PostPosted: 2008.04.20(Sun)16:16    Post subject: Reply with quote

In regards to the bluegill x green hybrid, it is certainly a possibility - it's just the fish doesn't seem "long" enough. He has remained quite stocky, plus the three dark bars across his cheek. Either way, you've got yourself some fishies that are gonna be pretty good size and be hungery all the time.
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veteran-fish
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Joined: 19 Apr 2008
Location: Tahlequah, OK

PostPosted: 2008.04.20(Sun)18:21    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was thinking the first one could be a bluegill/ redear hybrid. I guess it could be a combination of a lot of species...

Anyway, I wanted to narrow it down as much as possible. Recently the big one (first fish) has been making a nest, but there are no females w/ eggs in the tank. Is this normal?

Thanks for all your help!
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UncleWillie
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Joined: 26 Nov 2007
Location: Georgia, USA

PostPosted: 2008.04.20(Sun)19:16    Post subject: Reply with quote

Most sunfish species build a nest and guard it. It's kind of like mate attraction, even though there aren't any females in the tank - he doesn't know when one will come along to release eggs. He may start to become aggresive as he stays above his nest. What size is your tank?
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veteran-fish
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Joined: 19 Apr 2008
Location: Tahlequah, OK

PostPosted: 2008.04.22(Tue)17:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

UncleWillie wrote:
Most sunfish species build a nest and guard it. It's kind of like mate attraction, even though there aren't any females in the tank - he doesn't know when one will come along to release eggs. He may start to become aggresive as he stays above his nest. What size is your tank?


The tank size is 30 gallons. I know it's too small, but when I caught them I didn't realize how big they got.. Anyway, I'm trying to restore a 55 gallon and put him in that. It is more wide than tall, and it's very long.

I'm going to release all my bluegill into a local pond, and keep the dollar sunfish in the 30 gallon. There are two of them, so should 30 gallons be enough?

Thanks
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UncleWillie
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Joined: 26 Nov 2007
Location: Georgia, USA

PostPosted: 2008.04.22(Tue)18:48    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm going to release all my bluegill into a local pond, and keep the dollar sunfish


I think that's a good idea. Dollar sunfish are beauties and once they get used to to the tank, they should color up nicely. At four years old they can be 9.5cm, but I think if they make it to about 2-3 in captivity they should get to around 7.5-8.3cm long. That being said, I think a 30gal will suffice if they are the only ones in there. I would suggest lots of cover - they really like sluggish streams and vegetated swamps. Also this cover will help if you have two males building nest - they might get quite aggressive when guarding a nest.
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