|Press Releases | Search DNR | DNR Home|
2007 Young-Of-Year Striped Bass Survey Shows Healthy Reproduction
2007 American Shad Index Second Highest Ever Recorded
ANNAPOLIS, MD – Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has finalized the 2007 striped bass (rockfish) juvenile index. A measurement of striped bass spawning success in Chesapeake Bay, the 2007 index is 13.4, slightly above the 54-year average of 12.0. During the survey DNR biologists collected 1,768 young-of-year (YOY) striped bass.
“The successful continued abundance of striped bass along the Atlantic coast depends upon our stewardship of striped bass spawning habitat in Maryland, and the commitment of the Atlantic coastal states to sustainable fisheries management,” said Howard King, DNR Fisheries Service Director.
Striped bass populations are known for variable spawning success. This year’s healthy reproduction is the ninth above average index in the last twelve spawning seasons. Typically, several years of average reproduction are interspersed with occasional large and small year-classes.
The survey also revealed an increased number of American shad (white shad) in the Bay. The 2007 American shad index of 19.4 is the second highest ever recorded. Biologists observed record numbers of YOY American shad in the Upper Bay and very high numbers in the Potomac River. American shad have been protected by a fishing moratorium in Maryland since 1980 due to declining population size.
DNR biologists have monitored the reproductive success of striped bass and other species in Maryland’s portion of the Chesapeake Bay annually since 1954. Twenty-two survey sites are located in the four major spawning systems: Choptank, Potomac, and Nanticoke rivers, and the Upper Bay. Biologists visit each site monthly from July through September, collecting fish samples with two sweeps of a 100-foot beach seine. The index is calculated as the average catch of YOY fish per sample.
For more information visit http://www.dnr.state.md.us/fisheries/juvindex/index.html.
October 1, 2007
Contact: Olivia Campbell
410-260-8016 office I 410-507-7525 cell
Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 449,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov