green sunfish

The green sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) is native to the central United States from the Great Lakes south to the Gulf Coast. Its native range has expanded in North America as these sunfish are often stocked in private ponds and public lakes.

Although young green sunfish grow faster than bluegill or other species, many fail to reach harvestable sizes.

Green sunfish are one of the most colorful members of the sunfish family. The species is distinguished from other sunfish by several body features, including a large mouth and uniquely colored fins.

The upper jaw of the species extends to near the middle of the eye. The ear flap is black. Green sunfish are brownish green on the back and sides with rows of small, metallic blue spots toward the head and irregularly spaced spots toward the tail.

A large black spot occurs near the rear of the soft dorsal and anal fins. The edges of the pelvic, anal, caudal, and soft dorsal fins are yellow to orange, usually brighter during the spawning season. Green sunfish are also known as green perch, bream or blue spotted sunfish.