Striped Bass of the Ocklawaha River, Florida

THANK YOU, PhD. Grant Gilmore!

Gilmore, R. G., PhD. 2012. "Favorite fish of Florida's fringes. Stripers: America's fish has Florida history" article; "The sportsman's biologist" column. Florida Sportsman magazine (August 2012, page 65), Stuart, FL.'s+fringes%3A+tripletail+and+striped+bass,+two...-a0299537762
Gilmore (2012) article in Florida Sportsman magazine (August 2012, page 65):
"Based on historical fishing records it appears that the last holdout for striped bass spawning grounds on the Florida east coast was the Ocklawaha River. All of today's stripers caught in the St. Johns River are hatchery reared fish.

"So what happened to the Ocklawaha spawning population? Its demise was likely caused by a dam and other barriers on the lower reaches of the Ocklawaha River and a plan to cross Florida with a barge canal. The canal was squelched in the 1970s after much construction had already taken place, including the construction of the Rodman Dam and Reservoir. This changed water flows, eliminated riffle habitat that did exist, and most notably, produced a barrier to striper migration. There may have been some holdout stripers spawning after the dam construction, but today there is no evidence that stripers spawn naturally anywhere along the Florida east coast."

"Anyone who has played a striper on the line has got to admit that it is just as much fun, or more so, than a big largemouth bass. So why not bring back the striped bass spawning population to the Ocklawaha River? Why not figure out a way to get these great gamefish past the Rodman Dam?

"The local economic benefit of having the only native spawning striper fishery in Florida could be sensational." Enjoy,
"There are lake fishermen, and there are river fishermen, and seldom do the twain agree!" - Author unknown.