In Arizona's White Mountains we've got bass too! Angler's both
young and old enjoy year around fishing in the White Mountains. Bass are just one of the
many species of fish available to the avid fisherman! In Arizona, anglers may
take fish by one line with hooks or artificial lures. Purchase of a "two
pole"stamp on Arizona's fishing license allows anglers to fish
simultaneously with two poles.
Fishing in Arizona is governed by Arizona State Law. A valid
fishing license is required. Licenses may be obtained from the Arizona Game
& Fish Department or any authorized vendor.
World Record: 22 lbs. 4 oz.
Arizona Record: 15 lbs. 13 oz. at Canyon Lake in 1991
Description: Non-native to Arizona, Largemouth bass were introduced to Arizona
in 1897. The fish has a very large mouth with the upper jaw of the adult
extending beyond the rear margin of the eye. Skin is dark olive-green on the
back with green sides shading to a white belly. There is a dark horizontal band
on each side, a deep notch in dorsal fin, and the soft dorsal fin
usually has 12 to 13 rays. Length: 10-28 inches. Weight: 8 ounces to over 15
Location & Habitat: Largemouth bass are found in the Colorado,
Gila, lower Salt and lower Verde Rivers and their associated reservoirs. A warm
water fish that prefers clear water with structure and cover. Generally, bass
move to deep water during day and return to the shallows to feed at night. Bass
spawn from March through June.
Food: Bass are carnivorous, eating anything that moves. Their main
diet is fish, such as, sunfish and shad. They will also take crayfish and
aquatic insects when other foods are hard to find.
Angling: Largemouth bass are caught on a variety of baits, both
natural and artificial. Depending on the time of year, bass can be caught in
shallow water with a surface lure or deep with jigs or rubber worms. An angler
should think structure when bass fishing. Bass concentrate around submerged
trees, aquatic vegetation and underwater drop-offs.
Table Quality: The meat is mild tasting, white, flaky, firm and
low in oil content.
World Record: 11 lbs. 15 oz.
Arizona Record: 7 lbs. 1 oz. at Roosevelt Lake in 1988
Description: Non-native to Arizona, Smallmouth bass were introduced to Arizona
in 1921. The smallmouth bass most often are bronze to brownish green in color,
with dark vertical bars on the sides. In contrast to the Largemouth bass, the
upper jaw does not extend beyond the rear margin of the eye. The eye of the
Smallmouth bass is reddish in color. There is a shallow notch in the dorsal
fin; the soft dorsal fin has 13 to 15 rays. Length: 12-22 inches. Weight
8 ounces to 7 pounds.
Location & Habitat: Smallmouth bass are abundant in the Verde
River, Black River, Apache Lake and to some degree in Roosevelt Reservoir and
Lake Powell. They prefer rocky habitats in streams and lakes with clear waters.
Food: Shad and crayfish are consumed in lakes; and crayfish and
minnows in streams. In streams, smallmouth can be very aggressive when
hellgrammites and terrestrial insects are available.
Angling: Effective lures for small mouth, are those that resemble
minnows, plastic worms and streamer flies. Live baits include minnows,
hellgrammites and crayfish. One of the best smallmouth fisheries in the State
is the Black River.
Table Quality: The meat is similar to largemouth bass, mild
tasting, white, flaky and low in oil content.
Information & photo's courtesy Arizona Game & Fish