Language English Laurentian Maple Forest Photo: Biodôme OngletsDescriptionDistinguishing features This bass has a stocky body, a large head and a large mouth. Its back ranges in colour from pale green to dark brown, with paler flanks. Often, its eyes are red or orange. Dark crosswise bars that may be somewhat blurred mark its flanks (young have strong flank bars). Reproduction These fish spawn in late spring and early summer, in water ranging in temperature from 15 to 20ºC. The female lays from 5,000 to 14,000 eggs, depending on her size. Spawning occurs over rocky or sandy bottoms, in a nest measuring 2 m in diameter. Diet Smallmouth bass eat plankton, aquatic insects, crayfish and fish, as well as tadpoles, frogs, fish eggs and plant material. Predators Their enemies are northern pike and muskellunge. They are fished by humans. The eggs and fry are eaten by various fish species and the young by snapping turtles and gar. Habitat Their habitat varies with their size and the season. In general, smallmouth bass live in lakes and rivers, in shallow water, in rocky and sandy spots. This is a warm-water fish, preferring temperatures ranging from 20 to 28ºC. Ecology, behaviour During the breeding period, the male smallmouth bass puts on a mating display to attract females to the nest he has built. After spawning, he jealously guards the fertilized eggs and fry, for up to two weeks after they hatch. Pollution from household, industrial and thermal pollution is threatening certain smallmouth bass populations. French nameAchigan à petite bouche Scientific nameMicropterus dolomieuPhylumChordataClassOsteichthyes (bony fish)OrderPerciformesFamilyCentrarchidaeSizeLength: 20 to 38 cmWeight250 g to 1 kgLife span15 yearsStatusCommon species; fished for sport.