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California Fish Species

Arctic Grayling
Black Bullhead
Black Crappie
Blue Catfish
Brook Trout
Brown Bullhead
Brown Trout
Channel Catfish
Chinook Salmon
Coho Salmon
Common Carp
Creek Chubsucker
Cutbow Trout
Cutthroat Trout
Flathead Catfish
Gizzard Shad
Golden Shiner
Green Sunfish
Hybrid Striped Bass(wiper/palmetto)
Lake Chubsucker
Lake Trout
Largemouth Bass
Northern Pike
Rainbow Trout
Redear Sunfish
Sacramento Perch
Smallmouth Bass
Spotted Bass
Spotted Sucker
Spotted Tilapia
Striped Bass
Sunfish (Bream)
Threadfin Shad
White Bass
White Catfish
White Crappie
White Perch
Yellow Bullhead
Yellow Perch

Lakes with Spotted Tilapia on FishExplorer
Spotted Tilapia
Native to West Africa, the Spotted Tilapia has been introduced in Florida, Arizona, Nevada, and California.   In the U.S. it was first collected in 1974 in Florida.  It has since rapidly became the most abundant fish in the canal system of Miami-Dade County and is now widespread south of Lake Okeechobee.  
Spotted tilapia prefers slow-flowing canals, ponds, and lakes. This species feels most secure near structure, such as aquatic vegetation, vegetation lined shores or other cover. They are tolerant of brackish water and have rapidly expanded their range in the box-cut canals of South Florida and thrive in the warm springs of Nevada.
This cichlid sports a short rounded nose and three anal spines.  While similar in body shape to native sunfish, they tend to be stouter.  Coloration is light yellowish to greenish bronze with six to nine bars or spots on the sides. The tail fin is fan shaped.  Frequently they have reddish markings on the chin or throat area. This tilapia can grow over a foot and up to three pounds.
Spotted tilapias are substrate spawners, preferring the clean underside of rocky surfaces to lay up to 400 bluish eggs. Like other cichlids, both parents guard the nesting area and young aggressively.  They can spawn year around, but the cooler months between November and March account for most spawning activity. Spotted tilapias typically form breeding colonies. 
This species is omnivorous, feeding on wide variety of food items, although mostly on detritus, diatoms, and algae. In productive environments, spotted tilapia also feed on phytoplankton.

Most Recent Spotted Tilapia Forum Posts
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Spotted Tilapia Articles, Blogs, & Podcasts
Blog: Boomerang Tool Co. Grip 11.07.12 by Joshua Christensen
Blog: 4 Apps Every Angler With A Smartphone Should Use 02.09.12 by Joshua Christensen
Blog: Clouser Pattern Detailed - New Article 12.16.11 by Matt Snider
Blog: Become a pro 09.30.11 by Joshua Christensen
Blog: Launches California 09.27.11 by Matt Snider
Blog: California now on 09.23.11 by Matt Snider
Blog: California 09.23.11 by Matt Snider
Blog: Welcome to California 09.23.11 by Joshua Christensen
Recent California Spotted Tilapia Photos by Fish Explorer Members
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