Re: NANFA-- Dollar Sunfish distribution in western NC/SC

R. W. Wolff (
Thu, 10 Jul 2003 11:54:01 -0500

I don't have any spots I know of for sure in the Carolinas for dollar
sunfish. Never caught them their personally. From what I know, think of
places that would hold pygmy sunfish, pirate perch, warmouth and killifish.
It might even be easier to catch them on small barbless hooks. They are
aggressive strikers, both in aquarium and in ponds. Always need a back up
way to catch stuff on a trip. Also, catching larger individuals is easier
this way. This will help in identification. Jig a small section of worm ,
just enough to cover the bend of the hook, around tight to cover in one to
two feet of water near shore. If you cannot see the bait, the minute you
feel a tap, lift straight up with a steady pressure and not to fast. This
should hook the fish in the lip and avoid if it drops the bait becoming
snagged and tangeled in the brush or whatever.

What you noticed about them looking much different from your longears is
true. The "western " or "Mississippi valley" form is most like a typical
longear. Atleast as far as the bright orange/red breast and body with the
large turquoise lines on the face and a lot of larger spangles on the body.
These two forms are so different in fact the females are easily told apart,
and even young over 1.5 inches can be distinguished easily. Body shape ,
mouth shape , fins, everything is different. They even seem to act different
in feeding. I had hybridized the two forms, and they produced viable young.
They looked midway between the two parents. I got rid of them ( gar food).

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