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Hey guys I have always wondered ( and I think many have also ).

Picture this:
Walking around the nest beds and weeds. Checking out the shallows early in the morning for bass. While working along the edges a few sunfish dart by and the next thing you know a Huge Large Mouth Bass protecting its nest. Before your Heart drops, you step back to check your tackle. With a rod in hand and your heart pounding in the other its no 12, 15 incher its alittle bigger. Right when you pop the lure into the water another bass swims by, its the partner of the first one you saw and its EVEN bigger..! Which one Normally is the bigger mate of the two. The MALE or the FEMALE..!

This is just something I think everyone wonders when scotting for Bass..

.steve.
 

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Largemouth bass spawn stuff: Just what I have read here and there.

The male makes the nest and typically guards it for a week or two after the fry hatch. The female typically will be cruising nearby. Sometimes multiple females may lay eggs on a single nest as well as help patrol the area to ward off any predators.

The female is generally bigger, fatter and finicky at times. The male can almost always be irritated into striking.

The male guards the brood of fry often herding them back into the nesting area. The male will consume a few of the brood here and there. Then one day the male just says "hey I'm going out for a pack of smokes." and never returns.

Bass will often attempt to spawn at the same sight, every year as long as it is productive. Generally bigger fish tend to spawn in deeper water, earlier in the year.

If bass populations are healthy or in good numbers, they can withstand a certain amount of spawn fishing pressure. If bass populations are weak or in smaller numbers, it is my opinion that spwan fishing pressure should be avoided.
 

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Female black bass are considerably larger than males. Female pike and female walleyes are larger than males. Male catfish are roughly the same size. Female crappies and perch are bigger. However male bluegills, green sunfish, shellcrackers, and pumpkinseeds are bigger.
With trout, males are bigger but females can be very large too.
 

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More bass spawn bla bla bla...

Not all guarded nests have egg clutches. Some "late bloomers" will create nests that never get selected by a female but the male will still be determined to wait around til mid-June depending on the body of water.

Water temp controls everything! Smaller ponds generally heat up first so spawn begins earlier (sometimes mid-April)on these ponds. Larger lakes with heavy run off tend to warm up later and spawn hits its peak around June. Location in the state and growing season is also a factor.

Not all nest sites have fish. Many males will make a nest and then move on to another spot due to being spooked or simply by finding a better nest area. That is why you see a lot of nest areas without any fish at all this time of year. (I used to think folks pulled the fish out or scared them off but that is only true in some cases).

Smallmouth are a bit different. They pick a spawn area but do not spend as much time "grooming" a nest site. In most cases, they don't make a nest at all but rather pick a suitable terrain. The male protects the area in a similar manner but this is more to attract the female as opposed to protecting the brood. They are still aggressive but less than that of the largemouth IMO.

Once smallmouth lay eggs and fertilize, they are out of the area. No gaurding of the eggs or brood happens with these guys as the male will eat any brood smallies on sight.

Largemouth bass fry have a horizontal black line that is a dead giveaway as where smallmouth fry are solid black (or more actually a dark color that looks black under water). Smallies prefer colder water compared to largemouth so they typically spawn a month or two earlier. I also think that the female is substantially larger in both species.

This info was gathered from a book I call the "Bassmaster Chronicles" which is an accumilation of bass articles written by tournament pros and biologists. The rest is my personal speculation.
 
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