Striper Myth Busting

Myths and Facts About Striped Bass

The definition of controversies is "an earnest debate," and there has certainly been earnest debate over the stocking of Striped Bass in Arkansas. 
It’s a controversy that has been going on since Striped Bass were first stocked in Arkansas in 1956.

States such as South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, Arkansas, Virginia and Oklahoma have conducted controlled Striped Bass Scientific Studies that show similar results,  black bass and crappie are not a primary food item of striped bass, and can actually be of benefit to the growth of other sport fish. The scientific studies all indicates stripers feed almost exclusively on shad and live primarily in open waters.

So why all the Striped Bass controversy?

Some of the misleading myths about Striped Bass heard currently and through the years include:

Striped Bass are eating all the young bass and crappie click to read more on this subject


Stripers prefer soft fined fish like the shad and will rarely eat game-fish such as Bass and crappie.

Stripers are the least of worries for young bass and crappie.
The other species of sunfish are the primary consumers of these young fish.

A fact is, black bass are probably the largest consumers of young black bass, Striped bass and crappie along with Gar.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Fisheries Biologist conducted numerous Studies on the feeding habits and preferences of striped bass in fresh water reservoirs. As the Biologists' knew, study after study after study done by a variety of State Fish and Game agencies and universities indicated striped bass greatly preferred the forage species such as shad or alewife and rarely ate other fish.

Results indicated stripers preferred to eat fish that had no spines, Not the sharp spine species like on the backs of Bass and Crappie. Armed with information from these studies, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission felt confident that, as long as there were good numbers of shad in the Arkansas Lakes where Stripers are stocked, it was safe to continue stocking Striped bass.

A striped bass can eat its weight in fish each day.


Have you ever read about any biological creature that could eat its weight in food a day?
Striped Bass are like any other fish, that is they have feeding periods.
A mature Striped Bass eats on the average 3-5% of body weight per day.
A 20 pound striper eats an average of one pound a day.
More on feeding habits and needs of the Striped Bass.

Striped bass are spawning in Arkansas Lakes.


Stripers eggs require river current and salinity to reproduce successfully.

Stripers do make spawning runs up Lake river tributaries, but striper eggs must float free in a river’s current for two to three days to hatch.

Two rivers in Arkansas are known to have a naturally spawning population the Arkansas and Red Rivers.

Stripers and Black Bass are not Compatible.


The only bodies of water in Arkansas where documented stripers reproduction has occurred is the Arkansas and Red River.

Yet, the Arkansas and Red River systems consistently has some of the best bass fishing in the United States.

Striped bass eat all the bait fish in reservoirs.

False Again

Studies indicate little or no competition in lakes with large numbers of shad. Studies show there is some competition with the shad forage. The level of competition, however, is low, particularly with bass, crappie, bluegill and other sunfish species. The conclusion of this study estimated that if striped bass were removed, the total remaining fish population could increase by a maximum of  5 to 10 percent.
That may sound like a substantial increase, but keep in mind that is an increase for the combined total of all other fish.

For example, Arkansas Lakes have about 11 other fish species that feed on shad, so each species could gain only one-half percent to 1 percent, not a very significant increase.

In fact, the white bass population, by far, consumes more shad each year than stripers do.
During the years when white bass numbers are up, the threadfin shad population usually drops considerably.

Striped Bass Eat Continually. Real eating machines.


Striped Bass have feeding cycles just like any other fish.
More on feeding habits and needs of the Striped Bass.

And I'll leave you to decide this one. 

Striped Bass are not good to eat.

Well some folks don't eat fish, and some don't eat meat.
All I can say is: "Take a look at these Striper Recipes."

Maybe this information will help to dispel some false rumors about striped bass.
But there will probably always be a controversy about stocking them and everyone is certainly entitled to heir own opinions.

Controversy can be a good thing as long as people get the scientific facts because it brings an issue out into the open and requires us to seek the truth.
We Also realize some folks won't let facts get in their way.

Only 3 lakes in Arkansas have become acclaimed Striped Bass lakes.
Lakes Ouachita,  Beaver and Norfork are well known for their striper fishing and the population of Striped Bass in these lakes is maintained by yearly stockings.

By Ben Sanders Striped Bass Guide.

"There are many things in life that will catch your eye,  
but only a few will catch your heart.....pursue those."  Arkansas Striper Fishing

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