Effects of Hybrid Striped Bass On Gizzard Shad and White Crappie in Long Branch Lake

Monday, September 9, 2013
Governor's Hall I (trade show) (Statehouse Convention Center)
Paul H. Michaletz , Missouri Department of Conservation, Columbia, MO
Hybrid striped bass (striped bass Morone saxatilis x white bass M. chrysops) were stocked into Long Branch Lake, Missouri in an effort to change population dynamics of gizzard shad Dorosoma cepedianum and white crappies Pomoxis annularis with the goal of increasing growth of white crappies.  Small fingerling stockings of hybrid striped bass were successful in developing a population in Long Branch Lake.  The hybrid striped bass population was characterized by slower growth and poorer condition than other U.S. populations probably because of the higher stocking rates used in Long Branch Lake.  Hybrid striped bass appeared to reduce the densities of adult gizzard shad which led to increased growth rates of adults and greater densities of age-0s.  Despite these positive changes in the gizzard shad population, growth rates of white crappies did not improve and their abundance did not decline.  Although, stockings of hybrid striped bass did not improve the white crappie population, they provided an additional sport fishery in Long Branch Lake which lacks desirable fisheries for centrarchids.