Survey of Transportation Practices for Striped Bass and Striped Bass Hybrids
David L. Yow, Brian J. McRae, Douglas A. Besler, and Winthrop E. Taylor
Abstract.—We surveyed production managers of state natural resource agencies with striped bass Morone saxatilis and white bass M. chrysops × striped bass hybrid stocking programs to identify information needs and opportunities for shared innovations. Among 18 states responding, 17 reported ongoing fish transportation and stocking activities involving striped bass or striped bass hybrids. Oxygen diffusion was the most commonly reported treatment of fingerlings during transport, and the majority of respondents reported using agitators or aerators in hauling units. Sodium chloride was the most common additive used to condition hauling unit water, and five states also reported use of calcium chloride. Water quality monitoring procedures were less consistent among respondents, especially for receiving waters at stocking sites; only water temperature measurement was reported by all respondents. Although the majority of responding agencies reported monitoring fingerling survival during hauls, postrelease monitoring of fingerling survival was uncommon, in spite of the potential impact of release site water quality conditions on fingerling survival. Survey responses generally reflected improvements in consistency, with established guidelines since earlier surveys, but revealed an ongoing focus on prerelease condition of fingerlings as the primary measure of success of striped bass and striped bass hybrid stocking programs. We recommend that postrelease fingerling survival should be more widely monitored and used to determine success of stocking programs.