2019 Chesapeake Striped Bass Spawning Success Below Average

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources announced the results of its young-of-year striped bass survey, which tracks reproduction of stripers in Chesapeake Bay, the major spawning ground for the species. The 2019 juvenile striped bass index is 3.4, well below the 66-year average of 11.6. This follows two years in which the juvenile striped bass index was slightly above average.

Spawning success depends on numerous factors, including water temperature and freshwater runoff, not to mention the number of spawning age female striped bass in the population.

According to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, female SSB (spawning stock biomass) for Atlantic striped bass in 2017 was 68,476 metric tons, well below the SSB threshold set by fisheries managers for a healthy stock, indicating the stock is overfished.