Seasonal Distribution and Movement of Striped Bass in Lewis Smith Reservoir, Alabama

Lewis Smith Reservoir, an 8,583-ha Alabama Power Company impoundment on the Sipsey Fork of the Black Warrior River in north central Alabama, has received annual stockings of Gulf strain striped bass (STB-G) since 1983. Little is known about the distribution and seasonal movement patterns of striped bass in Lewis Smith Reservoir. During a three-year period from 1999-2001, 22 striped bass were captured, surgically implanted with ultrasonic transmitters and released back into the reservoir near their original capture site. Movement patterns of transmitter-equipped striped bass indicate that fish movement in the lake was dependent on fluctuations in seasonal temperature and water quality. During the critical summer months when the reservoir stratifies, striped bass tended to move downstream into cooler and deeper sections of the reservoir, taking advantage of lower water temperatures.

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