sunfish

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sunfish

sunfish, common name for members of the family Centrachidae, comprising numerous species of spiny-finned, freshwater fishes with deep, laterally flattened bodies found in temperate North America. All members of the family, which includes the black basses (genus Micropterus) and the crappies (genus Pomoxis), prefer fertile lakes with firm bottoms and build nests, which the males guard pugnaciously. The sunfishes, or breams, genus Lepomis, are smaller (1-4 lb/.14 kg average) members indigenous to E North America but successfully introduced in the West. Common eastern varieties are the the bluegill and green sunfishes, and the longear and common, or pumpkinseed, sunfishes, brilliantly colored with bright orange bellies. The redear and warmouth sunfishes are found in the Mississippi basin; the spotted sunfish, or stumpknocker, is a denizen of the South. The Sacramento perch, Archoplites interruptus, a native western sunfish, has been widely introduced in the W United States. The rock bass, genus Ambloplites, is indigenous to E North America. The black basses, the most important and valuable of American freshwater game fishes, are longer bodied and larger (averaging 2–3 lb/.9–1.4 kg); they include the largemouth and smallmouth black basses and the spotted bass. The crappies are the largest sunfishes, attaining a length of 1 ft (2.5 cm) and a weight of 2 lb (.9 kg). There are two species, the white crappie (P. annularis) and the black crappie or calico bass (P. nigromaculatus). The pigmy sunfishes, rarely over 11-2 in. (3.8 cm) long, bear an uncertain relationship to the family and are classed separately (family Elassomatidae). The totally unrelated ocean sunfish, or headfish, Mola mola, of the family Molidae, is allied to the puffer. Sunfishes are classified in the phylum Chordata, subphylum Vertebrata, class Actinopterygii, order Perciformes, family Centrachidae.
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sunfish

[′sən‚fish]
(vertebrate zoology)
Any of several species of marine and freshwater fishes in the families Centrarchidae and Molidae characterized by brilliant metallic skin coloration.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

sunfish

1. any large plectognath fish of the family Molidae, of temperate and tropical seas, esp Mola mola, which has a large rounded compressed body, long pointed dorsal and anal fins, and a fringelike tail fin
2. any of various small predatory North American freshwater percoid fishes of the family Centrarchidae, typically having a compressed brightly coloured body
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
"Crappies are gone from the weeds in a day," says multispecies guide Tom Neustrom (Minnesota Fishing Connections), "It frustrated me for years, because I didn't know where they went.
I caught the only crappie. I always felt there is nothing better than taking a boy fishing or hunting, to kindle a spark to last a lifetime.
annularis (Rafinesque)) crappies are among the most pursued sport fish in the United States.
Crappies might also have drawn the French Canadians' contempt by proving adept at stealing their bait.
Average crappies weigh 1 1/2 pounds, but can reach over 4 pounds.
We collected 2267 crappies from ten reservoirs in Alabama (Table 1).
"I fish for crappies on the Mississippi River, and crappie action gets hot in July in deeper water," says Tommy Skarlis, 2013 Crappie Masters national champion.
Tests with related species suggest that crappies probably detect frequencies from just about 10 cps to perhaps 1,000 cps with their inner ear.
And, yes, I would gladly eat crappies I catch from these shallow spots.
Watch spawntime crappies wend their way through these forests.
Fish Biology--The number of eggs produced by crappies depends on fish size.
It was the first day of April, but a prolonged March cold spell had crappies that had been ready to move shallow in a deep funk.