This symposium will emphasize the conservation need and diversity of black basses (genus Micropterus) in their native habitats. Of the nine described species of black bass in North America, six are endemic to drainages within the southeastern United States and include Guadalupe bass, shoal bass, redeye bass, Florida bass, Alabama bass, and Suwannee bass. Three of these species were described in the past 12 years and more possibly exist as undescribed species (e.g., Bartram's bass, Cuatro Ciénegas bass, and Choctaw bass). Information about the biology and ecology of genetically unique populations of black bass (e.g., Neosho smallmouth bass, Ouachita smallmouth bass, and Gulf-coast largemouth bass) will be presented.
Several species have conservation issues related to loss of genetic diversity through hybridization with closely related species and due to habitat loss or degradation. This symposium will consist of talks that discuss the biology, ecology, behavior, genetics, diversity, population dynamics, and fisheries of black bass. Information about conservation genetics, habitat restoration, and management practices for this important group of sport fishes will be discussed