The Weiss Lake Improvement Association hosted an informative question/answer session during their monthly meeting on Monday with representatives from the State Fisheries Department giving those in attendance an opportunity to share their concerns and opinions concerning the stocking of striped bass in Weiss Lake.
The increasing striped Bass population in Weiss Lake prompted a diet study with 450 striped bass stomachs examined. Of those 450, 150 had empty stomachs.
The remaining 335 striped bass stomachs had a total of 2,699 prey items in their stomachs, 2,522 were shad (93.4%), 160 were unidentifiable fish remains (5.9%), 6 were crappie (0.2%), 5 were bluegill (0.2%), 3 were minnows (0.1%), 2 were freshwater drum (0.07%), and one was a crawfish (0.04%).
These results were similar to other studies conducted in Oklahoma, Virginia, South Carolina, Florida, Arkansas, Utah and Tennessee concluded that sport fish are not a major prey of striped bass. There were also concerns that the influx of striped bass would impact the native sport fishes through competition for food.
Data collected by Auburn University and Fisheries Department personnel have shown no adverse effects on the crappie or largemouth bass populations in Weiss Lake.
Weiss Lake Improvement Association President Mark Collins said that the next step will include an additional meeting to take place at a later date.
Anyone with any questions or concerns can contact Collins at 256-996-9035 or visit the Weiss Lake Improvement Association online at www.weislakeimprovementassociation.org