Striped Bass Biologist Studies and Documentation.
Dismissing Striped Bass Myths
The definition of controversies "an earnest debate," and there has certainly been earnest debate over the stocking of striped bass in Arkansas. Itís a controversy that has been going on since stripers were first stocked in Arkansas in 1956.
So why all the controversy?
Striped Bass in Arkansas grow to 40 pounds and larger.
Anglers who preferred to fish for other species started assuming
So in the 1970s and 1980s, Fisheries Biologist have conducted numerous
studies on the feeding habits and preferences of striped bass in fresh water
Results indicated stripers preferred to eat fish that had no spines, Not the sharp spine species like on the backs of Bass and crappie. Armed with information from these studies, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission felt confident that, as long as there were good numbers of shad in the Arkansas Lakes where Stripers are stocked, it was safe to continue stocking Striped bass.
Then, in the 1990s another myth arose about striped bass in reservoirs.
Studies indicate little or no competition in lakes with large numbers of shad. Studies show there is some competition with the shad forage.
The level of competition, however, is low, particularly with bass, crappie, bluegill and other sunfish species. The conclusion of this study estimated that if striped bass were removed, the total remaining fish population could increase by a maximum of 5 to 10 percent. That may sound like a substantial increase, but keep in mind that is an increase for the combined total of other fish.
For example, Arkansas Lakes have about 11 other fish species that feed on shad, so each species could gain only one-half percent to 1 percent, not a very significant increase.
The only fish in Arkansas that stripers significantly compete with are white bass.
In fact, the white bass population, by far, consumes more shad each year than
So what does all this mean? It means that rumors about striped bass have little to no truth to them.
Some of the statements about stripers heard through the years include:
We hope this information helps to dispel some mis-information about striped bass.
But there will probably always be a controversy about stocking them and everyone
is certainly entitled to his own opinions.
Striped Bass Unlimited
715 Plum Hollow Blvd.
Hot Springs, AR 71913
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