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Fish Species

A plentiful and diverse bounty of fish can be found in Oklahoma’s lakes and waterways. 

Oklahoma’s 200+ lakes—not to mention its countless streams and rivers—contain 176 different fish species.

The Cherokee Nation Fish and Wildlife Association contributes to that diversity by carefully monitoring the environmental quality and habitability of lakes and rivers within Cherokee Nation’s 14-county jurisdiction. The department’s efforts are aimed toward helping all people enjoy fishing in Cherokee Nation for many generations to come.

From the most gargantuan catfish (that can exceed 100 lbs.) to the tiniest minnow, the Cherokee Nation Fish and Wildlife Association will be there to help in all conservation efforts for Oklahoma’s fish.

For more information on Oklahoma's fish species, visit the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation.

Fun facts:

Oklahoma’s state fish is the white bass (morone chrysops), which also is known as the sand bass.  

There are a number of fish hatcheries in Cherokee Nation that preserve and protect Oklahoma’s fish stocks against overfishing or overconsumption.  

One species of fish, the bluegill (lepomis macrochirus), lays an average of 40,000 eggs in a single mating season. The male bluegill protects a bluegill nest for a few days after hatching, not even allowing the mother to approach it.

The Ozark cavefish (Amblyopsis rosae) is the rarest species of fish in Oklahoma. Like many cave-dwelling species, the Ozark cavefish does not rely on sight to navigate, instead using papillae—bump-shaped organs containing many sensory cells, like tastebuds—to guide them.