Age, Growth, and Survival of Morone Hybrids in Clarks Hill Reservoir, Georgia

Hybrid bass (Marone saxatilis X Marone chrysops) age, growth, survival, and condition indices were studied in 1980 and 1981 to gain information needed to refine the hybrid bass stocking program on Clarks Hill Reservoir, Georgia. Age and growth data and survival estimates were derived using scales taken from fish collected with gill nets over a 12-month interval. Average calculated lengths for 1975-1980 year classes were age I, 279 mm; age II, 429 mm; age III, 491 mm; age IV, 536 mm; age V, 598 mm; and age VI, 561 mm. Relative mortality rates were positively correlated with increased stocking densities and catch curve analysis yielded survival estimates of 0.3085 to 0.3985. Condition indices suggested a decrease in hybrid bass condition since 1972. Hybrid bass growth potential and life expectancy are discussed regarding reservoir management and sport fishery utilization.

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