North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

Green Sunfish

Scientific Name: Lepomis cyanellus
Classification:  Game Fish
Abundance: Small creeks and streams in the Mountain and Piedmont region of NC.

Sport Fish Profile (pdf)


Additional Information

Green sunfish are native to the extreme western mountains in North Carolina. They have been widely introduced throughout the Piedmont but are absent or rare in the Coastal Plain. In North Carolina, green sunfish prefer small creeks and streams with hard, rocky bottoms. However, they tolerate greater levels of turbidity than other sunfish and are often found in polluted or degraded streams with heavy silt loads.


North Carolina offers some great fishing opportunities. If you are a resident or visitor to the state, please review the links below to ensure that you understand the rules, regulations and other guidelines.

The following fishing regulations are effective August 1, 2016 to July 31, 2017.

Inland Fishing

Inland Fishing Regulations (PDF)
Regulatory authority between the Wildlife Resources Commission and Division of Marine Fisheries. Inland game fish regulations include Manner of Taking, Seasons and Using Trotlines and Set-hooks.



Saltwater Fishing


There are no closed seasons on inland game fishes with the following exceptions (PDF).