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Freshwater Fish Species

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Find species and varieties, by state in the USA.

By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Locate information by clicking the species images below. Or, choose a state below to find information about fresh-water fish species in that state. This site focuses primarily on freshwater lakes, but also provides some information about ponds, rivers and streams.


Largemouth Bass

Largemouth bass

This is the most sought after sport fish in the USA and can be found in all states except AK and HI.

Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth bass

Native to northern waters, smallies can be found in all state except Alaska and Hawaii.

Spotted Bass

Spotted bass

Found in 23 states, primarily in the south eastern region of the US, spots are feisty fighters.

Shoal Bass

Shoal bass

Found in Florida, Georgia and Alabama waters.

Redeye Bass

Redeye bass

Native to the Coosa River system redeye are found in FL, GA, NC, SC and TN

Fishing for catfish

Channel Catfish

Channel catfish

These are the most popular catfish species, and is available in all but five states.

Flathead Catfish

Flathead catfish

Grows to over 100 pounds and exists in two thirds of the states.

Blue Catfish

Blue catfish

The biggest species of cats in the US, it is available in more than half the states.

White Catfish

White catfish

Resides in one third of the states and prefers backwaters and muddy ponds.


Black Crappie

Black crappie

The larger of the two crappie species, they are found in all but two states.

White Crappie

White crappie

Found in all states other than Alaska and Hawaii.



Walleye Fishing

This great tasting, white-meat fish is found in three fourths of the states.




The most popular of all panfish is found in lakes, rivers and ponds in all the states.

Flier Sunfish

Flier sunfish

Found in less than ten states in the southeast sector of the country.

Green Sunfish

Green sunfish

Found in over half the states, the green sunfish grows to over 2 lbs.

Hybrid Sunfish

Hybrid sunfish

Grows to over two pounds and found in more than a dozen states.

Longear Sunfish

Longear sunfish

Found in seven states in the southern/eastern sectors of the US.

Pumpkinseed Sunfish

Pumpkinseed sunfish

One third of the states harbor these sunfish which prefer coldish waters.

Redbreast Sunfish

Redbreast sunfish

Less than ten states house this hefty sunfish with very colorful males.

Redear Sunfish

Redear sunfish

One of the larger panfish, the redear is available in about half the states.

Rock Bass

Rock bass

Generally under three pounds, rock bass are found in about half the states.

Soptted Sunfish

Spotted sunfish

Found in less than ten states, they rarely exceed one-half pound.



This plant-eating sunfish is only found in over a half-dozen states.



Located in almost half the states, the warmouth grows to over two pounds.

White Bass

White Bass

The largest of sunfish, white bass tend to travel in schools.

White Perch

White perch

Excellent tasting sunfish which grows to over four pounds.

Yellow Bass

Yellow bass

This schooling fish averages less than one-half pound.

Yellow Perch

Yellow perch

The second most popular sunfish grows to well over three pounds, and makes for a great fish fry.


Rainbow Trout

Rainbow trout

Great tasting, and swims in cooler waters in all but a few states.

Cutthroat Trout

Cutthroat trout

A favorite in almost twenty states, the cutthroat can grow to over forty pounds.

Brook Trout

Brook trout

The brook is found in cold streams and creeks in nearly forty states.

Brown Trout

Brown trout

Found in over forty states this fighter is a favorite of many trout anglers.

Lake Trout

Lake trout

The largest of the trouts, lake trout can exceed seventy pounds.

Golden Trout

Golden trout

Found in a few western states this is the smallest of the trouts, and a protected species in some waters.


Steelhead Fishing


These sea-run rainbow trout are strong fighters, and found in less than ten states.


Atlantic Salmon

Atlantic salmon

Found in over a dozen states, they can grow to around eighty pounds.

Chinook Salmon

Chinook salmon

Less than ten states sport the chinook, which grows to over 30 pounds.

Chum Salmon

Chum salmon

Found in AK, OR and WA the chum is aka dog salmon or blue backs.

Coho Salmon

Coho salmon

This popular salmon grows to around thirty pounds.

Kokanee Salmon

Kokanee salmon

These landlocked sockeye salmon seldom reach ten pounds.

Pink Salmon

Pink salmon

Found in AK and WA the pink salmon grows to over a dozen pounds.

Sockeye Salmon

Sockeye salmon

Averaging five to six pounds, the sockeye is found in AK, ID and WA.

Striped bass

Striped Bass


Landlocked stripers can exceed sixty pounds and reside in over forty states.

Hybrid Striped Bass

Hybrid striped bass

A cross between a striped bass and a white bass, they can grow to over 25 pounds.

Other species

Alligator Gar

Alligator gar

Found primarily in southeastern states this gar comes in large sizes.



Great fighter but poor tasting, the bowfin prefers warmer waters.

Chain Pickerel

Chain pickerel

Less than ten pounds with nasty teeth, they eat any smaller fish.

Longnose Gar

Longnose gar

Grows to over twenty pounds and lives in close to half the states.



This aggressive fighter ives in northern, cooler waters and grows to over sixty pounds.

Northern Pike

Northern pike

Native to cold water in the north, they now reside in over forty states.



Bring heavy tackle as these guys grow to over six hundred pounds.



Found in over a dozen mid-western states, they are excellent table fare.



Mix of sauger and walleye are also found in over a dozen states.

Spotted Gar

Spotted gar

Up to ten pounds, it is found in the Mississippi River drainage system.



Found in nine states, this prehistoric fish grows to monster size.

Tiger Muskie

Tiger muskie

More than half the states offer them, and they grow to over fifty pounds.

By clicking on the images and links above, you will be taken to a page offering more information about each selected fish. Find details about the life cycle, plus tips on how to locate and catch them. Each page also provides links to state pages with a list of lakes where each species can be found.


Fish species and fishing opportunities by state.

AK Fish Species AL Fish Species AR Fish Species AZ Fish Species CA Fish Species CO Fish Species CT Fish Species DC Fish Species DE Fish Species FL Fish Species GA Fish Species HI Fish Species IA Fish Species
ID Fish Species IL Fish Species IN Fish Species KS Fish Species KY Fish Species LA Fish Species MA Fish Species MD Fish Species ME Fish Species MI Fish Species MN Fish Species MO Fish Species MS Fish Species
MT Fish Species NC Fish Species ND Fish Species NE Fish Species NH Fish Species NJ Fish Species NM Fish Species NV Fish Species NY Fish Species OH Fish Species OK Fish Species OR Fish Species PA Fish Species
RI Fish Species SC Fish Species SD Fish Species TN Fish Species TX Fish Species UT Fish Species VA Fish Species VT Fish Species WA Fish Species WI Fish Species WV Fish Species WY Fish Species