Utilization of Alewives and Gizzard Shad by Striped Bass in Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia

Alewives (Alosa pseudoharengus) and gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum) were the principal prey items in the stomachs of 708 striped bass (Morone saxatilis) collected in Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia, from April to December 1983 and 1984. Alewives comprised 51% and 39% of ingested prey items by number and weight, respectively; comparable values for gizzard shad were 38% and 58%. Stomach contents differed significantly between habitats (upper and lower reservoir) and among seasons. Regression analyses between size of consumed clupeids and total length of striped bass indicated a greater morphological availability of alewives to all sizes of striped bass.

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