Current Arkansas Striped Bass Management
Current stocking rates range from 2 – 6 per acre, and lakes are currently ranked in a priority for stocking
based on unspecified biological knowledge of the striper lakes, and the availability of fingerlings.
New stocking rates are proposed on a three-tier level according to specific biological criteria presented
later in this report. Tier 1 lakes will receive 0 to 2 per acre, Tier 2 lakes 3 – 7. The Tier 3 stocking rate of
8 – 12 will require the best of conditions and availability of fingerlings.
Waters now being stocked, in order of decreasing lake size are: Ouachita, Greer’s Ferry, Beaver,
Norfork, DeGray, Maumelle, Hamilton, Greeson, Catherine, DeQueen, and Little River.
The excitement of "deep-sea-fishing" in a freshwater environment provides a treasured angling
experience. Anglers spend an estimated $16.7 million annually fishing for striped and hybrid bass in
Arkansas. They are managed for several reasons. They provide a trophy angling experience and add
diversity to the fishery resources of the state. This helps bring out-of-state tourism dollars into the state.
Non-resident anglers spend an estimated $11.0 million annually fishing for stripers and hybrids. Secondly,
they inhabit the deep-cool-water habitats of large reservoirs that are seldom occupied by native species.
This makes wise use of habitat that would otherwise go under utilized. Finally, they help control the
gizzard shad to produce a more edible sized prey for native species
The introduction of striped bass and their hybrids have not been without problems. Many anglers oppose
stocking this large salt-water predator, fearing their impact on more popular native sport species. Bass
and crappie fishermen frequently pressure the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission to discontinue the
practice. Conversely, the striper anglers want more stocking. The purpose of this plan is to provide
reasonable and scientifically based criteria for annual stocking allocations, and to evaluate the success of
the plan by the same criteria.
Between 1956 and 1960 the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission stocked adult, sub-adult, yearling,
fingerling, and fry sized striped bass in an effort to establish a population in several Arkansas lakes with
special emphasis on Lake Ouachita
There are eleven bodies of water currently being stocked with 2" fingerling striped and/or hybrid striped
Lake Ouachita - Greers Ferry Lake - Beaver Lake - Norfork Lake - Lake Degray - Lake Maumelle -Lake Hamilton - Lake Greeson - Lake Catherine - Lake DeQueen - Little River
Current striped bass management in Arkansas is very basic, and is best described as "put-grow-andtake".
Reservoirs to be stocked are qualitatively selected on the professional judgement and experience
of fish managers considering suitable water quality, forage, and stocking rates. This method has worked
quite well based on the quality of striper fishing in Arkansas. In our review of the literature it is evident
that there is no one accepted methodology for the management of this species in the southeastern United
States. The success of our program is evident in high angling interest, excellent fishing reports, a state
record fish of 64 lbs. 8 oz.