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There is a creek that is my favorite place to go this time of year. My friends and I have caught these bass that look like smal

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  • There is a creek that is my favorite place to go this time of year. My friends and I have caught these bass that look like smal

    There is a creek that is my favorite place to go this time of year. My friends and I have caught these bass that look like smallmouth but they are a little different. We think they might be shoal bass. It favors a smallmouth but has a bigger mouth and has orange eyes. What do you think?

  • #2
    Orange eye's?, We call them "Kentucky Bass" in Ark.

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    • #3
      Rock Bass.

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      • #4
        rock bass or goggle eyes. Get them big enough they shine in the skillet.

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        • #5
          Bama,

          Could be either Coosa Bass or Shoal Bass. Both have similar markings with one exception, the shoal bass has a dark patch at the base of its tail. Both like "shoal" water and are pretty frisky on the end of the line. Check out the links below.

          http://www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/fish/bassblack/redeye/

          http://www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/fish/bassblack/shoal/

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          • #6
            I think it sounds like a red eye bass, also known as shoal or black bass. I've caught a few and they are wild looking.

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            • #7
              Hard to tell w/o a pic but the red eye leads me to beleive it's what we used to call "rock bass"

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              • #8
                Sharkfin,

                A Shoal Bass and a Redeye or Coosa Bass are not the same thing. Both can have red eyes, but are distinguished from each other by white margins on the tail and fins along with a tooth patch on the tongue of the Redeye or Coosa. The Shoal Bass does not have a toothpatch on the tongue and in most cases has a dark "blotch" at the base of the tail.

                The natural range of both fish do not overlap, though Shoal bass have been transplanted widely. I find that smaller streams typically are the haunts of the Redeye aka Coosa bass. I've seen specimens from small streams with eye color that ranged from "nuclear" orange to blood red.

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                • #9
                  Bama,

                  If the creek is in the Chattahooche/Flint/Aplachacola drainage, I'd bet on Shoal Bass. If it is in the Coosa River Watershed or another, I'd bet Redeye.

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                  • #10
                    My ignorance of southern fish comes through...

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                    • #11
                      I know for a fact it isn't a redeye or rock bass. And Beekeeper this creek runs into the Elk River which is part of the Tennessee drainage. Its in extreme northern Alabama.

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                      • #12
                        Bama,

                        With that bit of info I'd say you are probably dealing with the genuine article, a smallmouth bass. There are small regional differences in the fish and they do hybridize with Spotted Bass and the Redeye.

                        We lost our best Smallmouth fishery in GA due to butt heads transplanting Spots from Lanier into Lake Chategue. The resulting hybridization turned out an oddly colored fish some locals have taken to calling a spotmouth. Full blood smallies are rare in the lake now.

                        North Alabama has some good smallmouth in the Tennessee and as I understand it the Elk River is pretty cold so I would say smallie. Next time you catch one check out these ID points:

                        The cheeks should have from twelve to seventeen rows of scales. The dorsal fins are joined with ten spines and thirteen or fourteen soft rays.

                        Happy fishing!

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                        • #13
                          Thanks alot Mr. Beekeeper. I really appreciate your help. I respect men like you that help out others. Thanks again! Good Luck on your next fishing trip.

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                          • #14
                            Good answer Beekeeper and + 1 for you sir!!!

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