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Micropterus dolomieu
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Centrarchidae
Subfamily: Lepominae
Genus: Micropterus
Lacepede, 1802[1]
Type species
Micropterus dolomieu
Lacepède, 1802[2]
  • Aplesion Rafinesque, 1820
  • Aplites Rafinesque, 1820
  • Calliurus Rafinesque, 1819
  • Dioplites Rafinesque, 1820
  • Gristes Cuvier, 1829
  • Huro Cuvier, 1828
  • Nemocampsis Rafinesque,.] 1820

Micropterus is a genus of North American freshwater fish collectively known as the black bass, belonging to the sunfish family Centrarchidae of order Perciformes. They are sometimes erroneously called "black trout", but the name trout more correctly refers to certain members of the salmonid family.

The black bass are widely distributed east of the Rocky Mountains, from the Hudson Bay basin in Canada to northeastern Mexico. Several species, notably the largemouth and smallmouth bass, have been very widely introduced throughout the world, and are now considered cosmopolitan. All black bass species are highly sought-after game fish and well known as strong fighters when hooked, and bass fishing is an extremely popular outdoor sport throughout their native range.[4] Their meat is eaten, being quite edible and firm, although they are not regarded as commercial food fish.[citation needed]

All Micropterus species have a dull-green base coloring with dark patterns on the sides. Most reach a maximum overall length of 40–60 cm (16–24 in), but some strains of the largemouth bass have been reported to grow to almost a full meter (just over 3 feet) in length.[5] In spawning seasons, the male builds a "bed" (nest) in which a female is induced to deposit her eggs, then he externally fertilizes them. The male continues to guard the eggs and fry until they disperse from the nest.

Various species have been introduced into freshwater bodies in Japan, where they have been declared nuisance fish, and subjected to numerous attempts at eradicating them from local ecosystems.[6]



Currently, 13 recognized species are placed in this genus:[7]

A 14th species, the Choctaw bass Micropterus haiaka, has been proposed,[9] but this does not yet appear to have been widely accepted.[7] A further two species, the Altamaha bass and Bartram's bass, are as yet undescribed and have been included under the redeye bass.[10]

A genomic analysis in 2022 described new species and found that the binomials, M. salmoides and M. floridanus as used above are misapplied to the largemouth bass and the Florida bass, this study found that M. salmoides is the valid binomial for the Florida bass, while M. floridanus, is its junior synonym. They also found that the oldest available binomial for the largemouth bass is M. nigricans.[10]

See also



  1. ^ Citizen La Cepède (1802). Histoire naturelle des poissons, tome IV (in French). Paris: Chez Saugrain. p. 324. [1]
  2. ^ Eschmeyer, William N.; Fricke, Ron & van der Laan, Richard (eds.). "Micropterus". Catalog of Fishes. California Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 21 May 2020.
  3. ^ Eschmeyer, William N.; Fricke, Ron & van der Laan, Richard (eds.). "Genera in the family Centrarchidae". Catalog of Fishes. California Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 21 May 2020.
  4. ^ "American Bass Fish Species Guide". BadAngling.com. Retrieved 8 November 2022.
  5. ^ Rohde, F.C., Arndt, R.G., Lindquist, D.G. & Parnell, J.F. (1996): Freshwater Fishes of the Carolinas, Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1994.
  6. ^ "Locals in for long haul in battle against non-native fish". Asahi Shimbun. 6 July 2007. Archived from the original on 29 September 2007. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  7. ^ a b Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2019). Species of Micropterus in FishBase. December 2019 version.
  8. ^ a b c d Baker, W.H., Blanton, R.E. & Johnston, C.E. (2013): Diversity within the Redeye Bass, Micropterus coosae (Perciformes: Centrarchidae) species group, with descriptions of four new species. Zootaxa, 3635 (4): 379–401.
  9. ^ Tringali, M.D.; Barthel, B.; Seyoum, S. & Knight, J. (2013). "Molecular and Morphological Evidence for a Novel Black bass Species Native to Rivers of the East Gulf Coastal Plain]". Proceedings of the Symposium Black Bass Diversity: Multidisciplinary Science for Conservation, Nashville, American Fisheries Society 143rd Annual Meeting. Retrieved 21 May 2020.
  10. ^ a b Daemin Kim; Andrew T. Taylor & Thomas J. Near (2022). "Phylogenomics and species delimitation of the economically important Black Basses (Micropterus)". Scientific Reports. 12: 9113. doi:10.1038/s41598-022-11743-2. PMC 9170712. PMID 35668124.