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Sunfish ID


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#1 Isaac Szabo

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 12:37 AM

This one is giving me some trouble. I have a pretty good idea of what I think it might be, but I'm not 100% sure. What do you guys think? It's from the Buffalo River in AR.

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#2 mattknepley

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 05:35 AM

Kind of has a "long-green" vibe to my eye. Then again, I struggle with field ids of redbreasts...

Another absolutely gorgeous photo, by the way.
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#3 Guest_Dustin_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 06:18 AM

I agree with Matt but I was going with "greenear".

#4 Guest_Skipjack_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 06:54 AM

It might be your photo Isaac, but that is one striking fish. Greenear fits pretty well.

#5 Michael Wolfe

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 07:09 AM

I appears to me to have every characteristic of a green sunfish with all of the colors sort of amped up... I mean all that blue is normally there, just more teal instead of the turquoise color that Isaac is showing. Likewise all the same red/orange color is often there. I am going to go with regional and individual variation. Some of you are too quick to jump to the "H" word in my opinion (but that is just one hobbyists opinion). Look at the below picture of a green sunfish from Todd Crail's photo gallery. It looks very similar to me. Isaac has better sunshine and brighter colors, but all the basics of the fish seem the same. L cyananellus I say.
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#6 Guest_Dustin_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 08:22 AM

I agree with you Michael that hybrid gets tossed around a bit too frequently but in this case, my opinion is that this is definitely a hybrid. Isaac, do you have a photo of the local longear we can compare? The overall body color of a green is typically, well, green but this fish is more orangey. Also, look at the turquoise color radiating out into the dorsal and caudal.

#7 Guest_Subrosa_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 08:37 AM

I don't think Green at all when I look at that fish, except perhaps in regards to its shape. I was thinking Longear x Pumpkinseed, but I recall Brian Zimmerman discussing F1s of Greens that didn't show the light colored edging on the pelvic and anal fins, so......

#8 Guest_butch_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 11:06 AM

It do looks like a green sunfish to me than a hybrid greenear but that's just my opinion. I don't see any longear traits on him but it does have everything of green sunfish's traits. Maybe not a F1 hybrid but more like a backcross hybrid. Still I thinks it's just a colored up green sunfish.

Edited by butch, 01 April 2014 - 11:07 AM.


#9 Guest_butch_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 11:27 AM

So what if that fish ended up in a jar full of alcohol, would you questioning the hybrid status of the fish?

Edited by butch, 01 April 2014 - 11:28 AM.


#10 Guest_Dustin_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 11:52 AM

That's really hard to say based on a photo alone. Like it or not, coloration is a factor when determining species. There are an awful lot of snubnose darters, etc that are distiguished by little else without a genetic analyzer.

#11 Guest_EBParks_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 12:03 PM

I would have initially thought a long X green hybrid myself, but after seeing your Florida springs photos of all those brightly colored bluegills, I don't know. Other than the abnormal coloring, it does seem to have every single body trait you would find in a green sunfish. Dam that's a cool looking fish!

#12 Isaac Szabo

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 01:16 PM

OK, I heard back from Shawn Hodges, fisheries biologist for the Buffalo National River. Apparently they are trying out a stocking program for hatchery-produced Green x Longear hybrids. The thinking is that a colorful, aggressive sportfish might appeal to anglers (kind of like brook trout). I'm not sure how I feel about this...

#13 Guest_butch_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 02:33 PM

Sure coloration may be factor but the problem is that I don't see any longear traits in the fish in question. All it has is just had too much red/orange pigment.

#14 Guest_Uland_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 03:40 PM

OK, I heard back from Shawn Hodges, fisheries biologist for the Buffalo National River. Apparently they are trying out a stocking program for hatchery-produced Green x Longear hybrids. The thinking is that a colorful, aggressive sportfish might appeal to anglers (kind of like brook trout). I'm not sure how I feel about this...


Please tell me this is an April fool's prank - especially considering it's the Buffalo River!

#15 Isaac Szabo

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 03:54 PM

Bingo Uland! Sorry guys, I was just having a little April fool's fun. People weren't catching on with the photo like I expected (I thought it would be more obvious), so I ratcheted it up with the fake stocking story. Originally the photo was of a completely normal longear. I reshaped the body to that of a green while keeping the longear colors. Both shape and color are important ID characteristics, and it's interesting to see how people react when they contradict each other. It's also kind of neat to see the body shape differences between the two species in this little animation:

Posted Image

#16 mattknepley

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 04:10 PM

You are a mean, mean man. :)
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#17 Guest_Skipjack_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 04:15 PM

Very slick Isaac!

#18 Guest_EBParks_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 05:07 PM

Ha! Awesome!

#19 Guest_sbtgrfan_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 05:25 PM

Oh, that's good...

#20 Guest_Uland_*

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 05:41 PM

Excellent work Isaac! I'm impressed :biggrin:




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