The Centrarchidae or Sunfish family inhabits cold to temperate waters in the United States.
SYN: Eupomotis aureus, E. gibbosus, Perca gibbosa, Pomotis gibbosus, P. vulgaris, Sparus aureus
PD:An oval-shaped with with a laterally compressed body. The caudal peduncle is long and the dorsal fin is made up of 10-12 spiny rays. The color varies depending on the age of the fish. Younger fish have brown base coloration with overlaying pearly-green iridescence markings. The body is marked with numerous orange to red spots. The gill cover is marked with a characteristic rear flap which is black with a red end. The lower parts are orange while the fins are yellow to brown. The colors darken with age.
SIZE: To 9" (23 cm)
SS: Enneacanthus species.
HAB: North America; Great Lakes to Texas and east.
S: bottom, middle
TANK: A tank measuring 36" (91 cm) with a volume from 35-45 gallons (132-170 L) is sufficient for young fish. Adult fish require a tank measuring at least 48" (122 cm) with a capacity from 50-70 gallons (190-266 L). Plant the tank along the edges and back and use a fine gravel substrate. Leave open swimming areas and use good aeration.
WATER: pH 6.9-7.6 (7.1), 6-15 dH (8), 43-72°F (6-22°C)
SB: A peaceful species outside of spawning times when it become territorial. A patriarchal family is formed.
SC: Other sunfish, minnows, Misgurnus
FOOD: Live; worms, insects, insect larvae, brine shrimp, small fish; pellets; tablets; flakes
SEX: Males are generally more colorful, while females have fuller bellies. These differences are not foolproof.
B: Use water with a temperature from 64-68°F (18-20°C). A large spawning pit is constructed by the male using his tail. Courtship involves the pair meeting belly to belly in the spawning pit. Up to 1000 eggs are laid which are aggressively defended by the male. Remove the female. The male fans the eggs until they hatch 4-6 days later. The fry are fanned into plants where they hang for 3-4 days before becoming free-swimming. Start feeding with Artemia nauplii.
BP: 6. Easiest to breed when the water temperature varies according to the season. For example, in the winter the water should be considerably cooler than in the summer.
R: This species has been introduced into many parts of Europe. The Pumpkinseed can be kept in an outdoor pond, although the water temperature should not drop below 43°F (6°C).
DC: 4. This peaceful, cold water species is a fine addition to some outdoor ponds.