Bass Fishing photo

Scientists announced yesterday that they’ve discovered a new species of black bass (genus Micropterus) in Florida that’s related to the spotted bass.

According to this story on, researchers with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission first discovered the fish while DNA sampling in the Chipola River in 2007. The new species has since been found in coastal rivers in Alabama and along the western Florida panhandle, including the Choctawhatchee River.

Scientists have suggested naming the fish the “Choctaw Bass” because “the species’ range overlaps the historic range of the Choctaw Indians.”

Differences between this new bass species and the closely-related spotted bass are not easy to see, which is why the distinction between them has never been made before.