(See Fish Gallery Below)
Four freshwater species, including the striped, white, yellow bass, and the white perch (not a percid) are found in this family. All of these except the yellow bass inhabit Virginia waters. As in the perch family, they have two dorsal fins (the first with spines and the second with soft rays). The striped bass is a large (to 80 pounds) a marine, anadromous fish that generally spawn in tidal rivers, but it has adapted well to a landlocked, completely freshwater existence in some reservoirs. White bass, it its smaller (to 5 pounds) freshwater cousin.|
These schooling species are spring broadcast spawners releasing as many as 0.5 million small eggs/female. Striped bass eggs are semibuoyant must be kept moving a river current for several days at a specific water prior to hatching. Most freshwater populations must be maintained by stocking. The young lack a yolk sac and must feed on tiny zooplankton as soon as they hatch. Adult striped bass are voracious fish predators, preferring herring, shad, and alewife prey.
The striped bass is a premier sport fish, grows to a large size, exibits strong fighting ability and is good eating. Striped bass fishing generates as much as $60 million annually to the Virginia economy. Farming of hybrid striped bass in outdoor ponds and indoor tanks has proven successful and is a growing form of commercial aquaculture.