Growth, Survival And Distribution Of Striped Bass Stocked Into Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee

Striped bass (Morone saxatilis) were collected from Watts Bar Reservoir, Tennessee, in 1977 and 1978 to assess relationships between growth rates, survival, stocking density, and distribution patterns of stocked fingerlings. Survival and average sizes attained at ages I and 2 were inversely related to stocking density and directly related to size at stocking. Average lengths of age 3. and older fish were not related to stocking size, and the principal advantage of stocking large fingerlings was improved survival. Fingerlings stocked during June and July 1978 dispersed rapidly but tended to remain within the general area into which they had been introduced. During October and November 1978, electrofishing catch data indicated a preference for sandy shoreline habitats. Site-specific factors, such as the presence of preferred habitats, should be considered to enhance striped bass survival following stocking.

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