Yellow Bass (Morone mississippiensis)

Drawing of Yellow Bass (Morone mississippiensis)

Illustration © TPWD

Other Names
Game fish - no bag or size limits

The meaning of the word Morone is unknown. The species epithet mississippiensis refers to the Mississippi River from which the species was first described. Although yellow bass are sometimes confused with white bass or young striped bass, there are several distinguishing characteristics. First, the belly may take on a yellow color, from which the species derives its common name. Second, unlike other temperate bass, the two lowermost stripes are distinctively broken just posterior to the middle. Also, the second and third anal spines are approximately equal in length.
Although native populations do exist in areas of Oklahoma, Texas, and Mississippi, the species was primarily restricted to the Mississippi River from Minnesota to Louisiana. Introduced populations occur as far west as Arizona, as far north as Wisconsin and Iowa, and as far east as central Tennessee. In Texas, yellow bass range from the Red River south to the San Jacinto drainage.
Yellow bass are often found in schools. Like white bass, they may be captured using spoons, spinners, or live minnows. Due to their small size, averaging only about half a pound, and slow growth rate they are not highly sought by most anglers (a trophy fish may weigh one pound or less).
For more information
For assistance in identifying species, see our Bass Identification guide.