These are the results of the annual Striper Gill Net Survey. 2015
Fisheries staff from the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) recently completed annual gillnetting at Lake Texoma. Attached are several figures which illustrate striped bass trend data since 1993 as well as the length frequency of striped bass collected.
The percentage of big fish (>20") in the population has been building in recent years. Currently, 35% of striped bass collected were greater than 20-inches. Striped bass in Lake Texoma are reliant upon timely inflows from the Red and Washita Rivers for successful reproduction as they travel long distances up these rivers on spawning runs. Fluctuations in relative density (catch per net-night) are expected with this population as spawning opportunities vary each year. According to historic inflow data, record setting low inflow conditions have been experienced in recent years. This has resulted in decreased up-river spawning opportunities and success. Currently, the relative density is somewhat below recent years but comparable to what was observed in 2011.
As many people have recently experienced, Lake Texoma is offering up some true trophies. Numerous fish greater than 20-pounds have been caught this winter. With the higher percentage of "overs" (>20-inches) in the population, anglers should be mindful to carefully measure their catch to abide with the harvest regulations. As water temperatures continue to increase, so does the stress on these big fish. Be mindful to carefully handle these fish and realize that catch-and-release mortality can be high in warm/hot water. Avoid the temptation to "camp out" over schools of these large fish and move on once limits of "overs" have been taken.
Hopefully we will see abundant runoff in the watershed this spring that will offer favorable spawning opportunities.
Southcentral Region Supervisor - Fisheries Division
Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
2021 Caddo HWY
Caddo, OK 7472
Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Report as of March, 2008
Information from the February 2008 gill netting survey conducted by
fisheries personnel with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and
the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department from 30 sampling locations from the
upper Washita River Arm to the dam, to the upper Red River Arm on Lake Texoma
was completed and analyzed. I am attaching two graphs that show long-term
trends in striped bass population levels and also size structure of 596 fish
collected during the survey.
Our data indicates that overall abundance of striped bass continues to be
very good with total numbers slightly lower than levels observed in 2007, but
still ranking 7th in the past 16 year trend. Abundance of 20 inch and larger
stripers increased slightly compared to 2007 levels.
The 2007/2008 population size structure and abundance graph indicates that
good numbers of (11-13 inch) stripers from the 2006 year class were
collected; In 2007 there were excellent numbers of 16 – 18 inch fish. These
fish have now grown into the 19 – 21 inch class and should provide excellent
angling for stripers greater than 20 inches.
What does this mean? We should have another good fishing season ahead of us
in 2008 barring unforeseen problems such as the flood of 2007. We should
have a good summer of fishing with high numbers of 11 – 15 inch fish
available for catching, with 20 inch fish still representing (two out of
every ten fish caught). There should be an increased number of 19 – 22 inch
stripers for anglers to catch in 2008. Anglers should also have ample
opportunity to catch numerous quality 4 – 10 lb. fish and some trophy fish as
well to photograph and release or put on the wall of the den.
Again I would encourage everyone to take the necessary precautions to protect
this tremendous resource and return the fish in good condition where they can
survive and fight again. Thanks again for the great support the “Six Old
Geezers” family have provided our Department through the years. The new
electrofishing boat you helped purchase will be rigged out this summer and be
ready for survey work.
Good luck to everyone and let me know if you need anything.