Green sunfish

Lakes by County

Ferry County

  • Lake Ellen
  • King County

  • Lake Washington
  • Pend Oreille County

  • Diamond Lake
  • Sacheen Lake
  • Skagit County

  • Pass Lake
  • Spokane County

  • Bear Lake
  • Stevens County

  • Deer Lake
  • Loon Lake
  • Pierre Lake
  • Thurston County

  • Clear Lake
  • Information & Facts

    Green sunfishSpecies Name
    Green sunfish
    (Lepomis cyanellus)

    Common Names

    Size Range
    The typical length ranges from about 3-7 inches and usually weighs less than a pound

    State Record
    0.79 lbs; Mickey Hough; Bailey Lake, Spokane County; May 29, 1994

    Rock bass, warmouth and green sunfish are similar in appearance. None of the three is common in the state. They are stockily built, and from a side view have a body shape somewhat like the bluegill. Their mouths are quite large and strong in comparison to the bluegill and pumpkinseed, though. Both rock bass and warmouth have reddish eyes, especially noticeable in freshlycaught rock bass. To tell them apart, remember that the rock bass has five (or more) spines in its anal fin, while the warmouth and green sunfish have only three. The warmouth has a small band of teeth near the tip of its tongue, and fewer than 45 scales in the lateral line. The green sunfish has no teeth near the tip of the tongue, has more than 45 scales in the lateral line, and has a dark spot at the base of the last three soft dorsal rays.

    Where to fish for Green sunfish
    Warmouth generally prefer clear lakes with abundant aquatic vegetation. They may also occur in turbid waters with little or no vegetation. They are currently found in Silver Lake in Cowlitz County, plus a dozen or so other smaller lakes in Cowlitz, Lewis and Thurston counties.

    How to fish for Green sunfish
    This species is aggressive, sometimes striking lures almost as large as they are. Most common baits, plus a wide variety of artificial lures, will take them. Because of their robust build, they are strong fighters on light tackle.