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Largemouth Bass
(Micropterus salmoides)
We are not responsible for errors or omissions.
When boating, regardless of water depth, wear a PFD!

Description Regulations Habitat Records

Gamefish in the Chicago Area include:

  • Fishing for these requires a trout stamp in addition to your fishing license.


Largemouth bass are taken most frequently in the main channel border and lake habitats, They like the cover of weed beds, brush, stumps, willows and fallen trees where they can hide from their prey. Since, largemouth are sight feeders they are attracted by action and not by smell of the bait or lure. They succumb to the temptations of a variety of lures, plugs, and jigs which must each be retrieved in the manner best suited to the lure. Common lures are Mepps spinners and plastic worms. Minnows hooked below spinners provide more attraction than the lifeless form of a minnow alone, The best fishing is in May, June and September; and once the weather warms to 75 degrees or better, early morning or evenings are best.

Please check the fishing advisories for information.


There is a statewide daily creel limit of 6, either singly or in the aggregate except as specified under site specific regulations. There is no statewide size limit. Site specific limits

Habitat, habits and breeding

For much more information on breeding, habits and habitat, you can read the entire U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) for Largemouth Bass. This link is a scanned photocopy of the actual reports used by your local government to decide what fish to stock in particular locations. The reports are normally printed on heavy stock blue paper (You'll see the paper reflecting in the background of the scans. Warning: This report is over 2 meg in size and will require you to have Adobe Acrobat installed to view properly.


Illinois record: 13 lb. 1oz

North American Record: 22lb. 4 oz

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