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WHAT’S INSIDE THAT STRIPED BASS?

If it swims, creeps, crawls or slithers within reach of a striped bass then it’s fair game as a prey item.
By Toby Lapinski & John A. Tiedemann
WHAT’S INSIDE THAT STRIPED BASS?
From worms to crabs and finfish to snails, most anything that can fit inside a striped bass's mouth could be considered food. (Photo by Nick Honachefsky)

In the July issue of The Fisherman Magazine, John A. Tiedemann, the Assistant Dean, School of Science and Director of the Marine and Environmental Biology and Policy Program at Monmouth University in New Jersey, took an in-depth look at the many different forage items which have been found in the stomachs of Atlantic striped bass.

As he writes in the article:

A review of feeding studies conducted along the striper coast reveals that their diet is comprised of over 65 species of fish and more than 45 invertebrates, and some interesting patterns in feeding behavior emerge. In general, these studies reveal that there is both seasonal and regional variability in the stripers’ diet that is a reflection of local environmental conditions and the size of the bass.

What follows is a comprehensive list of both the fish and invertebrates which have been documented in the stomachs of striped bass as provided by John A. Tiedemann. Be sure to check out the July Issue of The Fisherman for the complete article article; it is certain to open your eyes to how, why and when striped bass select their prey and ultimately make you a more successful angler.

FISH FOUND IN STRIPER STOMACHS:

Anchovies

  • Bay anchovy (Anchoa mitchilli)
  • Striped anchovy (Anchoa hepsetus)

Blennies

  • Feather blenny (Hypsoblennius hentz)
  • Striped blenny (Chasmodes bosquianus)

Bluefish

  • Bluefish (Pomatomis saltatrix)

Butterfish

  • Butterfish (Peprilus triacanthus)

Cod

  • Atlantic tomcod (Microgadus tomcod)
  • Pollock (Pollachius virens)

Conger Eels

  • Conger eel (Conger oceanicus)

Drums

  • Atlantic croaker (Micropogonias undulatus)
  • Silver Perch (Bairdiella chrysoura)
  • Spot (Leiostomus xanthurus)
  • Weakfish (Cynoscion regalis)

Eelpouts

  • Ocean pout (Zoarces americanus)

Eels

  • American eel (Anguilla rostrata)

Flounder

  • Hogchoker (Trenectes maculatus)
  • Smallmouth flounder (Etropus microstomus)
  • Summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus)
  • Windowpane (Scophthalmus aquosus)
  • Winter flounder (Pseudopleuronectes americanus)

Gobies

  • Naked goby (Gobiosoma bosc)

Gunnels

  • Rock gunnel (Pholis gunnellus)

Hagfish

  • Atlantic hagfish (Myxine glutinosa)

Hake

  • Red hake (Urophysis chus)
  • Spotted hake (Urophysis regia)
  • Silver hake (Merluccius bilinnearis)
  • White hake (Urophycis ten)

Herring

  • Atlantic menhaden (Brevoortia tyrannus)
  • Atlantic herring (Clupea harengus)
  • Alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus)
  • Blueback herring (Alosa aestivalis)
  • American shad (Alosa sapidissima)
  • Gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum)
  • Threadfin shad (Dorosoma petenense)

Lampreys

  • Sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus)
  • Lizardfish
  • Inshore lizardfish (Synodus foetens)

Mackerel

  • Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus)

Minnows

  • Banded killifish (Fundulus diaphanous)
  • Mummichog (Fundulus heteroclitus)
  • Striped killifish (Fundulus majalis)

Mojarra

  • Spotfin mojarra (Eucinostomus argenteus)

Mullet

  • White mullet (Mugil curema)

Needlefish

  • Atlantic needlefish (Strongylura marina)

Perch

  • Yellow perch (Perca flavescens)

Pipefish

  • Northern pipefish (Syngnathus fuscus)

Porgies

  • Scup (Stenotomus chrysops)

Puffers

  • Northern puffer (Sphoeroides maculatus)

Sand Lances

  • Sand eel (Ammodytes spp.)

Sculpins

  • Grubby (Myoxocephalus aenaeus)

Sea Ravens

  • Sea Raven (Hemitripterus americanus)

Sea Robins

  • Northern searobin (Prionotus carolinus)
  • Striped searobin (Prionotus evolans)

Shiners

  • Golden shiner (Notemigonus crysoleucas)
  • Spottail shiner (Notropis hudsonius)

Silversides

  • Rough silverside (Membras martinica)
  • Atlantic silverside/spearing (Menidia menidia)

Smelt

  • Rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax)

Sticklebacks

  • Stickleback (Family Gasterosteidae)

Sunfish

  • Pumpkinseed (Lepomis gibbosus)

Temperate Bass

  • White perch (Morone americana)
  • Striped bass (Morone saxatilis)

Toadfish

  • Oyster toadfish (Opsanus tau)

Tonguefish

  • Blackcheek tonguefish (Symphurus plagiusa)

Wrasses

  • Blackfish (Tautoga onitis)
  • Cunner (Tautogolabrus adsperus)

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