Search This Blog

Friday, March 17, 2017

Species Fact Profile: Striped Bass (Morone saxatilis)

Striped Bass
Morone saxatilis (Walbaum, 1792)

Range: Atlantic Coast of United States and Southeastern Canada
Habitat: Estuaries, Rivers
Diet: Larvae - Zooplankton, Juveniles - Small Fish, Aquatic Insects and Invertebrates, Adults - Fish
Social Grouping: Juveniles less than 2 years old live in small, non-migratory groups.  Adults congregate into larger, migratory groups
Reproduction: Breed once a year, usually when the waters warm up between April and June.  Multiple males mate with a single female; females release anywhere from 500,000 to 3 million eggs per spawning event, the vast majority of which will not survive.  Males are mature at 2-3 years old, females at 5-6 years old.
Lifespan: Up to 30 Years
Conservation Status: Not Evaluated

  • Body length 45-140 centimeters, weight up to 23 kilograms (normally 3-7)
  • Background color of silver-green is covered with long, thin horizontal black lines
  • Migrate between freshwater and saltwater annually, spawning in saltwater
  • During courtship, several males will converge upon a female, herding her to the surface of the water and jostling with each other in what is known as a "rock fight."  This induces the female to release her eggs for all of the assembled males to fertilize
  • Adults are preyed upon by seals and sharks; juveniles are eaten by larger fish, including adult striped bass
  • One of the most highly sought after sport fish on the Atlantic Coast, having been fished since colonial times.  Their population has declined due to overfishing, though their populations are now recovering
  • Have been introduced to several inland bodies of water, as long as the Pacific Coast of the United States, where they are considered invasive pests.  They have also been introduced to waterways in Mexico, Ecuador, South Africa, Iran, and other nations
  • The State Fish of Maryland, Rhode Island, and South Carolina, as well as the State Marine Fish of New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, and Virginia
  • Sometimes hybridized with other bass, such as white bass, to produce new varieties of sporting fish

No comments:

Post a Comment