Hybrid bluegill a fun, challenging catch

A hybrid bluegill caught by Sam Shenk, of Meriden, Kan. These hard-fighting fish are a cross-breed between bluegills and green sunfish.

Josh Rouse / Washburn Review

One of the lesser-known game fish available to anglers is the hybrid bluegill.

These fish are a hybrid between a male bluegill and a female green sunfish. As a result of the cross-breeding, a large majority (90-95 percent) of the hybrids are male. However, reproduction is still possible. The second generation offspring is typically weaker and killed off by predators.

Hybrid bluegills grow quite a bit larger than either of their parent species, with a growth rate of three to five times as much as a pure bluegill, and put up a terrific fight when hooked. They grow at a rate of .5 to .75 pounds per years and can reach as much as three pounds, according to Dunn’s Fish Farm. They battle similar to a largemouth bass and have beautiful coloring. 

Hybrid bluegills are often stocked in ponds because of their aggressive nature and willingness to bite on lures, and they are a great alternative to regular bluegill that can overrun a pond.

Hybrid bluegills can easily be caught using grasshoppers or worms. However, they also are willing to attack a majority of lures, including topwater poppers, jigs, plastic worms, spinner baits and crankbaits.

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