Other Names: Striper, Rockfish, Linesider
The striped bass is the largest member of the sea bass family, often called "temperate" or "true" bass to distinguish it from species such as largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted bass which are actually members of the sunfish family Centrarchidae. Although Morone is of unknown derivation, Saxatilis is Latin meaning "dwelling among rocks." As with other true basses, the dorsal fin is clearly separated into spiny and soft-rayed portions. Striped bass are silvery, shading to olive-green on the back and white on the belly, with seven or eight uninterrupted horizontal stripes on each side of the body. Younger fish may resemble white bass (Morone chrysops). However, striped bass have two distinct tooth patches on the back of the tongue, whereas white bass have one tooth patch. Striped bass have two sharp points on each gill cover, and white bass have one. Additionally, the second spine on the anal fin is about half the length of the third spine in striped bass, and about two-thirds the length of the third spine in white bass.
NJ Fishing Season
- March 1 - December 31 (1 fish at least 28 inches, 1 fish over 43 inches)
Striped Bass Sizes
- Just about every year at least a few Stripers over 50 lbs. are caught by fisherman. This is truly a fish of a lifetime. It is believed that Stripers over 100 lbs. do exist. The world record is over 80 lbs and commercial boats have reported Bass estimated to be 122 lbs!
|IGFA World Record|
|81 lbs. 14 oz||Connecticut||August, 2011||Gregg Myerson|
|NJ State Record |
|78 lbs. 8 oz||Atlantic City, NJ||Sept 21, 1982||Albert McReynolds|
When the bunker are abundant in local waters many of the largest Striped Bass are caught on Bunker Spoons.
A variety of techniques are used by angler's in pursuit of Striped Bass. Depending on the time of year and the bait present will help to determine the best approach. Many Bay bound angler's prefer to anchor up and chum and bait with clams. This is best done on the outgoing tide. Ocean based anglers spend a lot of time trolling a variety of lures including Bunker Spoons, Shad Rigs, Diving Plugs, and Tube Rigs. It is best to "match the hatch" with your trolled offering. Wire line trolling is the 'go to' method the pro's use especially when looking for cows.
Life History The striped bass can live in both freshwater and saltwater environments. In coastal populations, individuals may ascend streams and travel as much as 100 miles inland to spawn. Running water is necessary to keep eggs in motion until hatching. Stripers may reach a size of 10 to 12 inches during the first year. Males are generally mature in two years, and females in three to four.
The striped bass is anadromous, native to a variety of habitats including shores, bays, and estuaries. The striped bass is a coastal species that moves far upstream during spawning migrations in coastal rivers. The native range is along the Atlantic coast east of the Appalachian Mountains from New Brunswick. Canada south to Florida and west into Louisiana. The species has been introduced at scattered locations throughout the central US. There have also been introductions as far west as the Colorado River in Arizona, and at various sites in California. . Because stream flow is required for a successful hatch, most reservoir populations are not self-sustaining and must be maintained through stocking.
As with most fish, the quality of the flesh and thus the flavor will be best if the fish and bled, gutted, and put on ice as soon as possible after capture. You should remove as much as the red meat as possible before cooking to keep any "fishy" taste to a minimum.
Striped Bass is fine table fare. It's white flesh is well suited to broiling, grilling, and especially for use in Soups and Stews.