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Montana Animal Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Pumpkinseed - Lepomis gibbosus

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Exotic Species (not native to Montana)

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SNA

Agency Status
USFWS:
USFS:
BLM:
FWP Conservation Tier: 4


 

External Links





 
General Description
The pumpkinseed is Montana's most widespread small sunfish, but like the others it has been introduced. Pumpkinseeds were first found here in 1910 in sloughs near Kalispell and now are found nearly statewide except for southwestern Montana. Pumpkinseeds are beautiful little fish, and in their preferred habitat of clear ponds with abundant aquatic vegetation they can grow up to 1 pound and provide some fun fishing. However, most populations are stunted. The pumpkinseed is another example of a fish which has become widespread through illegal introduction.

Diagnostic Characteristics
Gill rakers short and stubby.

General Distribution
Montana Range


 


Summary of Observations Submitted for Montana
Number of Observations: 939

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density

Recency

 

(Records associated with a range of dates are excluded from time charts)



Habitat
Ponds, small lakes, some large lakes, and slow streams. Prefers quite, clear water with an abundance of aquatic vegetation submerged brush.

Food Habits
Mostly snails and aquatic insects; but almost any organism of suitable size is eaten on occasion.

Ecology
May cross with bluegill and green sunfish but no hybrids reported in Montana.

Reproductive Characteristics
Sexually mature in 2-3 years. Spawns late spring-early summer.

References
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Citation for data on this website:
Pumpkinseed — Lepomis gibbosus.  Montana Field Guide.  Montana Natural Heritage Program and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks.  Retrieved on September 1, 2014, from http://FieldGuide.mt.gov/detail_AFCQB11030.aspx
 
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