Answers to the Frequently Asked Questions
about Stripers and Lake Ouachita
Wt are Stripers ?
What are stripers?
Name: striped bass
Other Common Names:
Related Species: White Bass,
Yellow Bass, White Perch, Hybrid Wiper
||Range: Both anadromous and
freshwater varieties. In Saltwater from New Foundland to
Florida in the Atlantic, from Louisiana to Apalachicola,
Florida in the Gulf of Mexico, from Washington to San Diego,
California in the Pacific. In Freshwater in coastal rivers
and large reservoirs and lakes in the entire lower 48 US
Anadromous-up to 125lbs, but more common 5lbs-40lbs.
Freshwater-up to 60's, common 2lbs-20lbs.
Schools in open water, 30-100 feet. Prefers 42-58 degree F
water but will feed in cooler or warmer water if deeper, cooler
water, or warmer flowing water (power plant discharge) is
available nearby. Requires lots of water volume or moving water
(high oxygen content). Common in freshwater in tailraces behind
dams, and near rocky banks with sandy bottoms.
Anadromous variety- leaves ocean waters and ascends coastal
rivers in early spring. Will seek out smaller tributaries with
good current and gravel bottoms. Very prolific female
stimulated by multiple males, eggs released over bottom, no
bedding. Freshwater stripers also ascend rivers seeking smaller
creeks with current and gravel bottoms, however, many lakes do
not have adequate spawning waters, limiting spawning
effectiveness. Bass feed heavily before and after spawning.
Look for river mouths on tide changes, and near lighted
deepwater bridges and piers. Rocky banks with current and
nearby deep water are also good. Primary forage species include
herrings, anchovies, shad (all varieties), and menhaden, can
include rainbow trout, clams, and crabs. Larger baits work
best for most stripers (5"-14"), as will lures that imitate
menhaden and shad in this size range. Smaller stripers
(schoolies) will also take a variety of plugs, spoons, jigs, and
twitch baits including those used for smaller smallmouth and
Originally two separate sub-species: Atlantic, and Gulf. Due to
spawning habitat degradation and over fishing, however stocks of
Gulf and Pacific stripers were severely decimated, and stocking
of the Atlantic variety was used to supplement populations. In
freshwater, the creation of the Santee-Cooper impoundment
created a source of solely freshwater fish. These freshwater
fish where the source of nationwide stocking efforts in the
1950's-1980's. Due to large-scale production of the
white/striped bass hybrid (wipers), ,the sterile wipers are now
the choice of most fisheries managers, reducing striper
populations in many reservoirs. The Atlantic striper population
is very cyclical and hinges largely on spawning habit
availability, commercial/recreational fishing pressure, and
menhaden/shad availability. Also a victim of pfisteria in some
"Fish On! Someone
grab that line!" yells Captain Jess as the Striper rattles and
violently bends the once
quiet fishing rod.
What is the World and Arkansas
State record in for Striper?
World Record Striped Bass
Al McReynolds measured 53" in Length with a 34
1/2"Girth weighting in at 78 lbs 8oz.
Atlantic City, New Jersey
Arkansas State Record
Length: 51 Inches
Girth: 31 1/2 Inches
White river near the Beaver dam
public record photo
What does "Ouachita" mean?
Ouachita is a Name given to the Ouachita river during the
French occupation of the region, originally the name was "Washita", roughly
translated meaning, ."River of good
hunting grounds...and sparkling silver water"...
The major Indian tribes that lived along the OUACHITA were the
Washita, Caddo, Osage, Tensas, Chickasaw and Choctaw. Time brought about a
great change to their primitive world as the white settlers moved into the
Is Lake Ouachita a natural
lake or man-made?
Lake Ouachita (Pronounced WAH-shi-tah) is a lake created
by the damming of the
Ouachita River by Blakely Mountain Dam. The lake is located near
Hot Springs, Arkansas. Lake Ouachita is the largest lake in
with over 975 miles of shoreline and over 40,000 acres (160 km˛). It is
completely surrounded by the
Ouachita National Forest. Lake Ouachita is located near two other lakes,
Lake Hamilton and Lake Catherine. These three lakes,
DeGray Lake to the near south, and the thermal springs of
Hot Springs National Park make Hot Springs a popular tourist getaway.
The purpose of the man-made Lake Ouachita is flood control, navigation,
recreation, and hydroelectricity. It is one of the cleanest lakes in
Arkansas, and its wildlife is very diverse. Some people say that there is a
species of rare, non-stinging
in the lake. These jellyfish are said to have been seen mostly by scuba
divers diving in the lake. Also
are said to live here. One area of Lake Ouachita features large crystal
veins, some of the largest in the world. Largemouth, Smallmouth, and Spotted
bass are abundant in the lake. So is Bream, Crappie, Catfish, Walleye, and
Striped Bass. In fact, Lake Ouachita is known as the
Striped Bass Capital of the World. Blakely Mountain Dam started
construction in 1948,was completed in 1953, and started generating
electricity in 1955, the dam is 1,100 feet long, and has an average height
of 205 feet. There are 21 recreational parks and areas, 150 picnic sites,
1,106 campsites, 13 swimming beaches, and 24 boat ramps. The eastern side of
Lake Ouachita contains Lake Ouachita State Park, a very popular Arkansas
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Just say no to live bait
Ouachita's Top Striper fisherman use artificial bait rather than
messy live bait. .
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