Redeye Bass: The Hidden Gem of Cleburne County

Ashleigh Nicole
redeye bassPhoto by© Brian Gratwicke

In the lush foothills of Alabama's Cleburne County, the cool, clear waters of Shoal Creek are home to a remarkable freshwater fish: the Redeye Bass (Micropterus coosae)​​. Recognized as one of the smaller black basses, the Redeye Bass grows to a maximum reported length of 47 cm (19 in) and a world record weight of 5 lb 2.5 oz (2.34 kg)​​.

The Redeye Bass: A Distinctive Freshwater Marvel

The Redeye Bass is a species known for its striking physical characteristics, including its upper jaw (maxilla) that extends to the back of the eye, which is usually red, hence the name​​. The back and sides of the Redeye Bass are typically olive to brown, adorned with darker brown mottling. This attractive coloration is complemented by its fins, which often exhibit an orange or red hue, and in some species, even white tips​​.

The Redeye Bass is not just another freshwater fish. It's a unique species identified through genetic tools, with several different species having been identified in area watersheds, including the Black Warrior, Coosa, Tallapoosa, and others​​. But what really sets the Redeye Bass apart is its potential economic contribution to the area.

The Economic Potential of Redeye Bass in Cleburne County

Cleburne County resident and avid angler, Tim Perkins, known as "The Outdoor Coach," believes that the Redeye Bass could reel in tourism dollars from anglers and outdoor enthusiasts. "To see one in the wild with the sunlight on it, that is the most amazing fish, it's a beautiful, beautiful fish," said Perkins. "We're sitting on a gold mine, so to speak," he added, referring to the economic potential of attracting anglers to Clay, Cleburne, and Randolph counties​​.

Raising Public Awareness: The Redeye Bass Initiative

Local officials share this optimism, aiming to raise public awareness about the Redeye Bass by placing signs in Cleburne County and other areas where the fish are present. The signs, paid for by the Native Fish Coalition of Alabama, are part of an effort to educate the public on the natural treasures that the region possesses​​.
redeye bass in TNPhoto by© baltimorefishing1

Cleburne County: The Next Blue Ridge, Georgia

Adam Dasinger, a local outdoor enthusiast who helped get the Pinhoti Trail Heflin Spur officially recognized by the U.S. Forest Service, sees the Redeye Bass as a stream for additional ecotourism in the area. Dasinger envisions Cleburne County becoming the next Blue Ridge, Georgia.

Dasinger stated,

There is no reason why this area can't be the next Blue Ridge, Georgia. We have everything they have as far as natural resources.

Ecology, Economy, and Community

The Redeye Bass story in Cleburne County is a testament to the intricate balance of ecology, economy, and community. A small, uniquely beautiful fish, hidden in the cool streams and rivers in the foothills of the mountains, holds the potential to transform an entire region. This is a story of environmental awareness, local pride, and the transformative power of nature, all embodied in the vibrant eyes of the Redeye Bass.

Thanks for reading!

Check out my blog and subscribe to the newsletter for more self-empowering and personal growth content!

If you have a story you think I should cover, let me know about it. Send an email to

Don't already have the NewsBreak App? Go ahead and download it here for easier access to all the upcoming stories.

This is original content from NewsBreak’s Creator Program. Join today to publish and share your own content.

Comments / 1

Published by

Ashleigh Nicole is an Alabama-based writer and freelancer, bringing a unique blend of culinary expertise and creative storytelling to the world of writing. The former executive chef at a prominent French bistro was forced to rethink career choice after COVID-19. She is now a truth seeker and news junkie sharing what she finds with her audience. Drawing from her diverse experiences, Ashleigh now uses her storytelling abilities to captivate readers and offer a fresh perspective.

Alabama State

More from Ashleigh Nicole

Comments / 0