Striped Bass -  Morone saxatillis

 

fish: striped bass


Duane Raver/USFWS
Click on picture to enlarge

Oklahoma Distribution – Naturally reproducing populations of striped bass have developed in lakes Texoma and Keystone and in the Arkansas River Navigation System. Foss, Tenkiller, Canton, Great Salt Plains, Grand and Kaw lakes also have been stocked.

Description - The striped bass hybrid, which is a cross between the white bass and the striped bass, has a slightly arched back and has two tongue patches.  It also has some broken lines on each side.  The white bass can be identified by the distinctive arched back just behind its head.  It also has only one tongue patch.  The striped bass is not arched at the back and has two distinct tongue patches.  It is also identified by the dark, usually unbroken lines on each side. (Click on picture to enlarge)

Habitat – Stripers are found cruising in large schools in open waters. They do not frequent shorelines.

Natural Food Sources – Insects, shad and minnows.

Spawning – The spawning urge is triggered at water temperatures of 55 to 70 degrees F., reaching a peak at about 65 degrees. Female stripers may produce up to five million eggs. The eggs are semi-buoyant and require a moving, unobstructed river during incubation. When the water is still, eggs sink into the silt and the embryos die of suffocation.

Facts – Stripers were originally a marine or estuarine species. An anadromous spawner (ascends freshwater streams to spawn), striped bass became landlocked in an artificial impoundment near the Atlantic coast. They adapted so well to that environment that many states, including Oklahoma, began transplanting stripers. Striped bass can reach weights of 40 pounds or more.