Thick-bodied sunfish with a large mouth, the upper jaw extending to about the middle of the eye. Back and sides are bluish-green, grading to pale yellow or white on the belly. Black vertical bars are sometimes evident on the sides. Blue mottlings and streaks are present on the side of the head. Pelvic fins in breeding males are white or pink; and the tail and anal and dorsal fins are tipped with white or salmon-pink. Usually has a dark splotch on back of dorsal fin. Long, dark ear flap. Rounded pectoral fin.