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Smallmouth Stocking Program in Lake Blue Ridge

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  • Smallmouth Stocking Program in Lake Blue Ridge

    Smallmouth Bass Production in Georgia: The First Steps

    Clint Peacock, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division, 1255 Perry Pkwy
    Perry, GA 31027. Email: clint.peacock@dnr.ga.gov

    Smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu) are a black bass species native to the Tennessee River
    watershed, which includes parts of extreme northern Georgia. As with other black bass species, they
    are frequently targeted by recreational anglers. Smallmouth bass in Georgia have had difficulty
    competing with the introduced spotted bass (Micropterus punctulatus). These two factors have
    presented a need and the public support for smallmouth bass conservation work. Due to the possibility
    of hybridization between smallmouth bass and spotted bass, any broodfish collected from the wild need
    to be genetically evaluated. Once wild broodfish arrive at the hatchery and are shown to be genetically
    pure smallmouth bass, they are held in a concrete raceway where they will eventually spawn. Hatchery
    conditions (temperature and lights) are controlled throughout the year to simulate changes in the
    seasons. Spawning substrate is a mat of Spawntex with rocks adhered in the center. Spawned Eggs are
    treated daily with 100 ppm of 35% Perox-Aid to limit fungus growth. Hatched fry are either stocked into
    a pond or held inside and fed artemia nauplii. In 2017 two different diets were used in producing phase
    II smallmouth bass. Fish in a pond were given live forage (fathead minnow and gambusia) while fish
    inside the hatchery were fed a commercial pellet diet (Rangen Soft & Moist). Pond produced fish grew
    from fry to 96.6mm average total length in roughly 4 months. In the same time period, pellet reared
    fish grew from 51mm average to total length to 127.4mm. All fingerlings were stocked into Lake Blue
    Ridge to support the struggling smallmouth bass population.

    http://gaafs.org/pdfs/2018_GAAFSProg...habstracts.pdf
    #JBNavy

    "Everyday is a new life to a wise man."
    -Chinese Proverb

    “At sunrise everything is luminous but not clear.”
    -Norman Maclean

    "We are what we hunt."
    -PH

  • #2
    I don't know much about smallmouth but think that they probably require colder water relative to other bass species but can withstand warmer temps than trout. If I'm right, I would love to see them stocked in hooch dh. Makes a helluva lot more sense than trout.

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    • #3
      Mid 1990s

      We built our cabin north of Blue Ridge summer of '96 and I spoke to someone at a local boat dealer about fishing in Lake Blue Ridge. He said something to the effect that, "were hardly any bucket mouths, just a bunch of dang small mouths ...". I remember thinking to myself that Blue Ridge would be a great lake for small mouth and not good at all for largemouth! The massive water fluctuations and releases in the last few years played havoc with the trout in the tailwater and I have to think the lake species were equally disrupted.

      Mr Durniak, can you shed light on this? --jk--

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      • #4
        Originally posted by fishtacos View Post
        I don't know much about smallmouth but think that they probably require colder water relative to other bass species but can withstand warmer temps than trout. If I'm right, I would love to see them stocked in hooch dh. Makes a helluva lot more sense than trout.
        I'm pretty sure they already stock shoal bass in that area.
        If this were rocket science most of us wouldn't be doing it. - Terry Creech

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        • #5
          Originally posted by fishtacos View Post
          I don't know much about smallmouth but think that they probably require colder water relative to other bass species but can withstand warmer temps than trout. If I'm right, I would love to see them stocked in hooch dh. Makes a helluva lot more sense than trout.
          Native shoal bass are stocked in that area.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by JOHNKIES View Post
            We built our cabin north of Blue Ridge summer of '96 and I spoke to someone at a local boat dealer about fishing in Lake Blue Ridge. He said something to the effect that, "were hardly any bucket mouths, just a bunch of dang small mouths ...". I remember thinking to myself that Blue Ridge would be a great lake for small mouth and not good at all for largemouth! The massive water fluctuations and releases in the last few years played havoc with the trout in the tailwater and I have to think the lake species were equally disrupted.

            Mr Durniak, can you shed light on this? --jk--
            Lake Blue Ridge is one of the few lakes in the state with no size limits on largemouth bass so there might have been something to it at one time.

            Now its just mostly Alabama spotted bass anyway.

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