Movement, Habitat Use and Mortality Rates of White Bass in Jordan Lake, NC

Wednesday, September 11, 2013: 8:40 AM
Pope (Statehouse Convention Center)
Kelsey Lincoln , Applied Ecology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
D. Derek Aday , Applied Ecology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
James A. Rice , Applied Ecology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
Little is known about fundamental aspects of the life history, ecology and population dynamics of white bass Morone chrysops in southern reservoirs, but recent concerns about declining white bass populations in some North Carolina systems serve as an impetus for additional study to facilitate the development of conservation and management strategies.  We used a telemetry approach to assess movement, habitat use, and monthly mortality rates of white bass in Jordan Lake, NC.  Acoustic transmitters were implanted into 50 white bass collected at the confluence of the Haw River and Jordan Lake during their spring spawning run in 2012, with an additional 25 white bass tagged in spring 2013.  Tagged fish were continuously monitored using an array of passive receivers and located monthly during active tracking surveys.  White bass exhibited seasonal movement throughout the entirety of the lake and were located in a wide variety of habitats.  Fishing mortality was the highest during peak fishing season in the spring and natural mortality of adults remained low throughout the year.  Results from this study will provide managers with data and insights to inform development of management plans for white bass in Jordan Lake and similar systems throughout North Carolina and the southeast.