Management Implications Of Bass Fishing Tournaments

This study was designed to assess the harvest of a bass fishing tournament and its effect oli the bass population of a lake. The data evaluated here are taken from a total of 2254 largemouth bass weighing an estimated 4419.5 pounds harvested during a three day (29-31 March, 1972) bass fishing tournament held at Lake Lanier, Georgia, a 38,000 acre reservoir. Of the 794 bass sexed by excising gonads, 504 (63.5%) were females. The largest male measured 19.1 inches (3 lb., II oz.) while the longest female was 23.8 inches (7 lb., 4 oz.). Catch rates for the tournament were 0.25 fish per hour and 0.49 pounds per hour. Average bass weight was 1.9 pounds. Total harvest per acre during the tournament was estimated at 0.12 pounds. Cove rotenone samples from 1961-67 indicate bass standing crops from 4.2211.25 pounds per acre in Lake Lanier. Estimated yearly bass harvest (numbers) from four years of creel censusing (1962, 1965-67) ranges from 17,834 to 30,778. Catch rates computed from creel censuses indicated a range of 0.060-0.220 bass per hour. Ideas on the use of fishing tournament data in fisheries management are also presented.

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