Description: Exotic from Africa. Introduced in 1960's. At least four distinct species of tilapia have been introduced into Arizona. Extensive hybridization often makes identification difficult. Similar in body shape to bluegill. Two-part lateral line with front portion higher on body than rear portion. Long, unbroken dorsal fin and anal fin with pointed ends. Length: 4 to 18 inches. Weight: 6 ounces to over 5 pounds. Location and Habitat: Found in the Salt and Gila rivers and in the network of canals and ditches in farming areas between Phoenix and Yuma. Often stocked in canals and artificial lakes for algae and vegetation control. Isolated populations exist at Alamo Lake, Lake Pleasant, and Roper Lake. Mortality results from exposure to temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Food: Primarily vegetation and algae eaters, althougth they will take insects and worms. Angling: Fish during warmer months, with small worms, crickets and dough balls on small hooks (size 12). In addition to angling, tilapia may also be taken by bow and arrow, crossbow, snare, gig, spear and speargun as long as none of these methods are practiced within two hundred yards of any boat dock or designated swimming area. Table Quality: The white, fine textured meat has a very mild flavor and is considered very good eating.