Diet Overlap of Striped Bass X White Bass Hybrids and Largemouth Bass in Sooner Lake, Oklahoma

In 1980 and 1981, stomach contents were removed from 224 striped bass (Morone saxatilis) X white bass (M. chrysops) hybrids and 149 largemouth bass (Mu:ropterus salmoides) collected from Sooner Lake, Oklahoma. Relative abundances of forage fishes were also estimated and food electivity and overlap of diet were determined seasonally. Gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum) was the most important food of all hybrids except those <301-mm; insects and inland silversides (Menidia beryllina) were seasonally important. Gizzard shad, insects, and sunfishes (Lepomis spp.) and crappies (Pomoxis spp.) were the most important foods of largemouth bass. Insects and inland silversides were the major constituents of the diet of largemouth bass ≤151 mm. Electivity values showed gizzard shad were generally preferred by both hybrids and largemouth bass whereas silversides, sunf18hes, and crappies were consistently underutilized in relation to their abundance. Overlap in diets, which was limited except for the largest individuals of the two fish types, was probably not significant considering the diversity and abundance of forage and the ability of both fishes to utilize a wide range of prey items.

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