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Pumpkinseed illustration


Sunfish Family: Sunfish family members are deep and stockily built, attractive in coloration and popular as panfish. Most sunfish spawn in early summer, when water temperatures warm to the mid-60 and low 70-degree range. Male sunfish build nests by excavating soft substrate with their fins to expose sand, gravel, roots or other firm objects for females to lay their eggs over.

Pumpkinseed Identification

  • Dorsal fin has a spiny front portion and a soft-rayed rear portion
  • Similar to the bluegill, but lighter in color and usually not as large
  • Red or orange spot on the flap of the gill cover


Pumpkinseeds may hybridize with bluegill and is not abundant in North Dakota.