Redfins range is along the Atlantic Coast from New York south to Florida and the Gulf Coast drainages. Two subspecies are recognized. These pickerel occur in clear streams with abundant aquatic vegetation and slow to moderate currents. Water temperature preference is the high seventies. Redfin pickerel live to six years.
The cheeks and gill covers are fully scaled, while the head tends to be scaleless. These cigar shaped fish have a dark vertical bar beneath the eye. Their backs tend to dark green to brown in color. Color patterns on the sides vary from a reticulate pattern to slanting vertical bars. The underside is cream colored and the lower fins are reddish-orange.
Spawning occurs in shallow, weedy waters when the spring water temperature reaches 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Female deposit their adhesive eggs where they are fertilized and left unattended. Redfins sexually mature by age two.
Adult Redfin Pickerel are solitary, aggressive predators. They lie motionless for long periods along vegetation edges. Prey is ambushed and swallowed head first. Large insect larvae, crayfishes, and fishes are menu items.
Redfin Pickerel in Texas
Redfin Pickeral are found in the Red and Sabine River drainage. They do well in lakes, swamps, and the slower backwaters of rivers and streams.