SCIENTIFIC NAME :
black bass, Florida bass, Florida (or southern) largemouth, green
bass, bigmouth, bucket mouth, line sides, Oswego bass and green trout.
All Florida freshwater lakes and rivers.
Prefers clear, non-flowing waters with aquatic vegetation where
food and cover are available. They occupy brackish to freshwater
habitats, including upper estuaries, rivers, lakes, reservoirs and
ponds. Also, they can tolerate a wide range of water clarities and
bottom types, prefer water temperatures from 65 to 85 degrees, and are
usually found at depths less than 20 feet.
The largemouth is the largest member of the sunfish family. It generally
has light greenish to brownish sides with a dark lateral line which
tends to break into blotches towards the tail. Often confused with small
mouth and spotted bass, it is easily distinguishable because the upper
jaw extends beyond the rear edge of the eye. Also, its first and second
dorsal fins are almost separated by an obvious deep dip, and there are
no scales on the soft-rayed second dorsal fin or on the anal fin.
Growth rates are highly variable with differences attributed
mainly to their food supply and length of growing season. Female bass
live longer than males and are much more likely to reach trophy size. By
age two or three, females grow much faster than male bass. Males seldom
exceed 16 inches, while females frequently surpass 22 inches. At five
years of age females may be twice the weight of males. One-year old bass
average about seven inches in length and grow to an adult size of 10
inches in about 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 years. The oldest bass from Florida whose
age has been determined by fisheries biologists was 16 year of age.
Generally, trophy bass (10 pounds and larger) are about 10 years old.
World Record bass was
22 pounds, 4 ounces, caught in Montgomery Lake, Georgia in 1932.
FLORIDA RECORD :
17 pounds, 4 and 1/4 ounces, caught in an unnamed lake in Polk County
The meat is white, flaky and low in oil content. The flavor
depends upon the way the fish are cleaned and prepared. The strong weedy
taste of bass caught in some waters may be eliminated by skinning the
fish and salting and peppering the fillets before battering. Fillets
usually are fried, while larger ones may be baked.
The largemouth bass is Florida's most popular freshwater game
fish. Much of its popularity is due to its aggressive attitude and
willingness to strike a lure or bait with explosive force. The
value of the largemouth as a sport fish has prompted a movement toward
TACKLE AND BAITS:
Light casting and spinning tackle is adequate in most instances. When
fishing heavy cover you may want to use line from 12 to 25 pounds
depending on the structure.
They will strike almost any kind of artificial lure or live bait,
but most are taken on plastic worms, surface plugs, spinnerbaits, crank
baits. For Trophy size Largemouth, most are caught
using Large Wild Shiners.
Casting; Still Fishing; Live Bait and Trolling.