cousin to the Bluegill, Sunfish are also called
because of their bright orange bellies.
[COMMON NAMES] [IDENTIFICATION] [WHERE THEY LIVE] [LIFE HISTORY] [FISHING METHODS]
Pumpkinseed sunfish, Punkys, Yellow sunfish
Pumpkinseed are a very colorful, deep-bodied, slab-sided fish with a small mouth. Breast and belly are orange to yellow, with lighter colored sides in a variety of bright colors. The ear flap is black, but has an orange-red spot on the border.
Where They Live
They are found in shallow ponds and lakes in weed beds, under brush and around docks and piers.
Pumpkinseed sunfish are nest spawners with the male digging the nest in water as shallow as 6 to 12 inches. Spawning occurs in May or June and the males guard the nest until the eggs hatch. The female will lay between 1,600 to 2,900 eggs. Several females may lay eggs in a single nest. Adult pumpkinseed eat primarily larval insects, some adult insects, and occasionally larval fish. Pumpkinseed growth is similar to that of bluegills.
Fishing for pumpkinseed sunfish is similar to fishing for bluegill sunfish. The best method is to use natural baits, such as worms, with small hooks and light lines. In addition, small spinner baits and flies can also be used. Anglers should concentrate along the edges of dense vegetation or woody debris.
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