Featured in Strung Magazine Spring 19′ Issue, “Inland Emperor,” is a story by Connor Cockrell about landlocked stripers. Below is a sneak peek of the article and be sure to get your Strung Magazine Subscription for $19.95 by using discount code LANDLORD.
“Morone saxatilis is a juggernaut, ranking as the preferred consumer of baitfish patterns from New Jersey to Arkansas. Typically anadromous, lakebound stripers found across the southern United States run up tributary systems to spawn – remnant behavior deeply ingrained in their DNA. They’re rarely successful because striper eggs need significant turbulence to stay off the river bottom which lake headwaters normally can’t produce. Whereas black bass, white bass, and salmonid eggs hatch on river and lake bottoms, striped bass hatch in open water several days after fertilization.
The first “landlocked” anadromous stripers were found in the Santee Cooper Lakes in South Carolina. Historically, stripers would run out of the Atlantic and into the Santee and Cooper Rivers to spawn but became trapped inland when the Pinopolis dam was built in 1941, thereby forming lakes Marion and Moultrie. The state natural resources department began stocking stripers once they realized they could help sustain wild populations by artificially inseminating females’ eggs in a large tank with male sperm. The program continued to grow over the following years; now, any lake-dwelling striper in the United States today most likely originated in South Carolina.
Stripers were introduced in lakes around the country primarily as a population control mechanism for shad populations. Shad consume the eggs of attractive – and lucrative – game fish species, making them an enemy of well-intended anglers and fishery managers. Because of their preference for these small swimmers, anglers typically throw lures and flies that resemble the lake’s typical size and color of forage fish. Striper fishing is a unique game when specifically targeting them, but black bass fishermen often catch them when casting topwater lures early in the morning or fishing from rocky banks and points throughout the day. The differences in approach between bass species are myriad”……for the full article get your issue of Strung Mag.
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