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Smallmouth vs Spotted bass

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The question which is a stronger fighting bass between largemouth and Smallmouth pound for pound goes to the smallmouth without debate. It's a different debate when you compare Smallmouth to Spotted bass fighting strength pound for pound, both are very strong fighters with more endurance then largemouth bass.  

Not all states have both smallmouth and Southern or Alabama Spotted bass, California does. I believe Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, South and North Carloina all have both populations. Don't confuse Kentucky Northern Spots  that rarely get over 1 1/2 lbs.

I believe from my experience that Spots are faster swimmers and fight a long time, but smallmouth are strong fighters with good endurance and have jumping ability that excels. Both these bass are about the same size potential and that makes it difficult to settle the debate. 

I give a slight edge to smallmouth because they jump more often and higher.

Tom

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I've not yet had the pleasure & challenge to fish for spotted bass.  
May have to fix that . . . 

But I have been fortunate to experience some of the aerobatics that big smallmouth are so willing to participate in.

It's impressive and never gets old.

:smiley:

A-Jay

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We don't have spotted bass, but I can testify that smallies are definitely strong fighters pound for pound. There were several times I hooked a smallie thinking it was possibly a 5+ pounder only to find out it's a 2.5lb smallie once I got a better look at it and on the scale!

 

 

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Agreed, Mr. Tom.  

It has been my experience that spots tend to dive and run, smallies jump and spit lures.  I will take either.

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Catching an Alabama spot in the alabama river is something you can't put into words. They are an agry fish, especially in current.  I live in the middle of some world class smallies though, some of them will pull you off the deck of the boat. I would say a smallmouth can go on longer runs but a spot can be about like a Tasmanian devil, they fight incredibly hard and will rip all the skin off your hands. I say it's a tie...........

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I agree Tom but you have to take it one step further.  You could do a whole another comparison on Smallmouth from different locations....Northern Lakes vs Southern Lakes, Lakes vs River Smallmouth as well.  It's amazing how much different a Smallmouth from Lake St Clair looks compared to a Lake Erie Smallmouth.  There are distinct differences.  I would love to weigh in on your comparison to the Spotted Bass but the one trip we took to Lanier, we came in right after an ice storm and the lake offered me 1 crappie and 1 Bluegill in 3 days of fishing and I had to spoon the Crappie out of 70 feet of water.  

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I’ve had Alabama spots make my drag scream and put a nice bend in the rod. 

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Tom we have Kentucky spotted bass here in MO.  Our lakes that have threadfin shad for forage have good sizes of KYs.  It is very common to catch them from 3-3.5#.  Our state record is over 7 #.

 

We also have a hybrid strain called the meanmouth.  That one gives about the best fight you can get.  Our state record of them is over 5 #.

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3 hours ago, Jig Man said:

Tom we have Kentucky spotted bass here in MO.  Our lakes that have threadfin shad for forage have good sizes of KYs.  It is very common to catch them from 3-3.5#.  Our state record is over 7 #.

 

We also have a hybrid strain called the meanmouth.  That one gives about the best fight you can get.  Our state record of them is over 5 #.

To the best of my knowledge California first Spotted bass transplant were from Kentucky  and northern spots in 1939 at Friant Dam/lake Millerton in central Cal. Several lakes rivers were stocked in central Cal and the states record remained about 3 1/2 lbs until the late 1960's. Alabama or Southern Spotted bass were transplanted into lake Perris SoCal and records started falling until the first world record Spotted bass was caught at Perris. The Southern Spots were being planted all over the state during the successful Southern Spotted at Perris, similar to the Florida LMB success in San Deigo. Bullards Bar lake in northern Cal currently holds the 11 lb 4 oz world record for Spotted Bass.

Checking Kentucky's Spotted bass record is 7 lbs 11 oz, don't know what strain that bass was because states or the IGFA doesn't seperate bass by strains although they are recognized as 2 different bass species. California Spotted bass from Kentucky stayed under 3 1/2 lbs for decades until Alambama Spots were introduced, same forage base, same climate different growth rate. Kansas had the Wicitha Spotted bass but I think it is extinct?

Tom

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I have caught 3 spots in Ohio. I believe they are Kentucky Spots here and only in a few of our rivers around the state. There is only one river I fish a decent population of spots and they tend to be on the smaller size.

 

The spots I caught even though they were small they fought like hell and put on a show.

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Our Department of Conservation says our spots are the Kentucky strain.

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I've only caught one spotted bass in my life. It was 12" long and caught in Kentucky. I'm guessing it was a Kentucky-strain spotted bass.  😎

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Gosh...good question.  They both have depth in their body's and I have caught some in some rivers and lakes that were amazing fighters...My favorite place to catch smallies was on the Columbia....oh gosh.  For spots....Shasta, Orville, Watts Bar, Cumberland.  Well....guess you can see like catching fish everywhere.

:)

 

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I can say I live near erie and have caught tons of big smallmouth. My brother lives in Northern California. I have fished out there quite a bit. This spring I caught a 5 1/2 # spotted bass at San Pablo that was the strongest bass I’ve ever caught. I love fishing for both. 

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The smallmouth bass I have caught jumped more but the spotted bass fought harder. Pound for pound I would say the Suwannee bass fought the hardest for its size out of all the black bass species I have caught.

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