Fish ID

Lake Texoma Fish Species

Types of Lake Texoma Fish Brought to you by Dan Barnett Striper Guide Fishing

In 2004, a blue catfish was pulled from the lake weighing in at 121.5 pounds, temporarily setting a world weight record for rod and reel caught catfish. More commonly, catfish in Lake Texoma weigh from 5 to about 70 pounds.

Dan Barnett Lake Texoma Fishing Guide | Texoma Striper Fishing Guides

Lake Texoma provides habitat for at least 70 species of fish!

several of which were introduced by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD). Those species popular for recreational fishing include largemouth, spotted, white, and striped bass, white crappie and channel, blue, and flathead catfish; The striped bass fishery at Lake Texoma is extremely popular and is considered one of the most successful striped fisheries in the nation. In addition, downstream of the dam is a tailwater fishery that supports striped bass, as well as channel, blue, and flathead catfish. Gizzard shad, threadfin shad, and Mississippi silverside are considered important forage species in the lake. Freshwater drum, carp, gar, buffalo, and river carpsucker make up the bulk of rough fishes in lake Texoma.

The lake was stocked with striped bass in the late 1960s, and has proven to be an excellent habitat for them. It is one of the seven U.S. inland lakes where the striped bass reproduce naturally, instead of being farmed and released into the waters. The “stripers” feed on large schools of shad, and often reach sizes of 12 to 20 pounds (lake record of 35.12 lb caught in 1984).

Learn more about the following fish species found in Lake Texoma:

What Is An Alligator Gar? Lake Texoma Fish Species Identification from Texoma Guide Dan Barnett

Gars are easily distinguished from other freshwater species by their long, slender, cylindrical bodies, their long snouts, and the fact that they are equipped with diamond-shaped interlocking (ganoid) scales. Additionally, the dorsal and anal fins are placed well back on the body, and nearly opposite each other. The tail fin is rounded. Alligator gar may be distinguished from other gars by the presence of two rows of large teeth on either side of the upper jaw in large young and adults. Coloration is generally brown or olive above, and lighter underneath. Lepisosteus is Greek, meaning “bony scale,” and spatula is Latin for “spoon,” referring to the creature’s broad snout.

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What Is A Common Carp? Lake Texoma Fish Species Identification from Texoma Guide Dan Barnett

Cyprinus is Greek, and carpio is Latin; both words mean “carp.” The common carp is a heavy-bodied minnow with barbels on either side of the upper jaw. Typically, color varies from brassy green or yellow, to golden brown, or even silvery. The belly is usually yellowish-white. The dorsal fin with 17-21 rays, and the anal fin both have a heavy toothed spine. Individuals 12-25 inches in length and weighing up to 8-10 pounds are common, although they can grow much larger. Common carp may live in excess of 47 years and weigh over 75 pounds. The all-tackle world record was landed in 1987 from Lac de St. Cassien, France, and weighed in at 75 pounds 11 ounces.

What Is Channel Catfish? Lake Texoma Fish Species Identification from Texoma Guide Dan Barnett

ctalurus is Greek and punctatus is Latin, meaning “fish cat” and “spotted,” respectively. Channel catfish are easily distinguished from all others, except blue catfish, by their deeply forked tail fin. Unlike flathead catfish, the upper jaw projects beyond the lower jaw. Coloration is olive-brown to slate-blue on the back and sides, shading to silvery-white on the belly. Typically, numerous small, black spots are present, but may be obscured in large adults. The anal fin has 24-29 soft rays, in contrast to the blue catfish which always has 30 or more rays in the anal fin.

What Is A Flathead Catfish? Lake Texoma Fish Species Identification from Texoma Guide Dan Barnett

Pylodictis is Greek meaning “mud fish,” and olivaris is Latin for “olive-colored.” Flathead catfish are typically pale yellow (hence the name “yellow cat”) to light brown on the back and sides, and highly mottled with black and/or brown. The belly is usually pale yellow or cream colored. The head is broadly flattened, with a projecting lower jaw. The tail fin is only slightly notched, not deeply forked as is the case with blue and channel catfish. Young fish may be very dark, almost black in appearance.

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What Is A Spotted Bass? Lake Texoma Fish Species Identification from Texoma Guide Dan Barnett

Micropterus is Greek meaning “small fin” [see Guadalupe bass for further explanation]. The species epithet punctulatus, Latin for “dotted,” refers to rows of dark spots on the lower sides. Coloration is similar to that of Guadalupe bass, but does not extend as low on the body. Despite the fact that spotted bass are not nearly so large and numerous as largemouth bass (in Texas their maximum size is less than one-third that of largemouth bass), they are excellent fighters. Spotted bass are very popular in east Texas, particularly in the Sabine, Neches, and Cypress Rivers. Known maximum size in Texas exceeds 5.5 pounds.

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