Influence of Dense Hydrilla Infestation on Black Crappie Growth

Black crappie (Pomoxis nigromaculatus) growth was reduced when hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata) coverage exceeded 50% in Lake Baldwin, Florida, between 1977 and 1979. Black crappie did not reach harvestable size (>228 mm TL) until age 3 and 4 during periods of extensive hydrilla coverage and reduced threadfin shad (Dorosoma petenense) abundance. Following hydrilla removal and shad population reestablishment, harvestable size was obtained by age 2 and growth of older fish increased.

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