Bluespotted Sunfish (Enneacanthus gloriosus)
The bluespotted sunfish ranges from southern New York, along the Atlantic coast to the southern part of peninsular Florida, and west along the gulf coast to the Florida Panhandle. In New York, it is common in the Basher Kill in the Delaware drainage and in a small number of lakes in southeastern New York. Bluespotted sunfish are also resident in Jamesville Reservoir (east of Syracuse) where it was either stocked prior to the 20th Century or remained as a post-glacial relict population.
The bluespotted sunfish lives in slow-moving streams and standing waters where dense aquatic vegetation is present, and this species is also found in darkly-stained waters with extensive areas of silty substrate and decaying vegetation. Their nests are usually 4 to 5 inches in diameter, ranging up to 12 inches in diameter, and can be located among beds of filamentous algae or other soft substrates at very shallow depths (< 1 foot). Spawning occurs in late spring (May to June).
Bluespotted sunfish feed on snails, zooplankton, amphipods, and insects. They can be successfully maintained in aquaria.
Distribution of bluespotted sunfish in NY state. Dark dots represent where actual samples of bluespotted sunfish were taken. White dots represent historic distributions.
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