Feeding Habits of Striped Bass.

In fresh water lakes and rivers Striped Bass feed mainly on Shad and Crawfish

Striped Bass consume many kinds of small fish and a variety of invertebrates. Preferred foods for stripers in fresh water lakes mainly consist of gizzard and threadfin shad, golden shiners and minnows. Younger stripers feed on amphipods and mayflies. Fingerlings stripers start on zooplankton.

Like other temperate bass, they move in schools, and all members of the school tend to feed at the same time.

Heaviest feeding occurs in the early morning evening, but they feed sporadically throughout the day, especially when skies are overcast.
Feeding slows when water temperatures drop below 50 degrees but does not stop completely.

The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) and graduate students from the University of Oklahoma have conducted research on larval and juvenile striped bass diets in Lake Texoma which has a naturally reproducing striped bass population. Their findings show Striped bass feed on plankton as larvae and small juveniles, switching to insects in mid summer.The larger juveniles switch to a fish diet, primarily silversides, by midsummer. By fall, the smaller individuals continue to feed on plankton and insects, but the larger individuals continue to prey on fish, with shad supplementing silversides in the diet.  

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Striped Bass Management Plan indicated Age I and II stripers fed on zooplankton. Bluegill and green sunfish were important food items at one sample site in November (Gustaveson et. al. 1985). Based on these and similar studies, fish managers conclude that stripers feed almost entirely on shad. When they cannot find shad they generally cease feeding, become thin and emaciated, and often starve to death being especially true during the summer when they are confined to a limited amount of water where the temperature and oxygen levels meet minimum requirements to keep them alive.

More research articles on feeding habits of striped bass.

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