Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Physiological response of largemouth bass to angling stress

January 1, 1991

The physiological effects of catch-and-release fishing on largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides from Lake Powell and Mantua Reservoir, Utah, were evaluated, and an estimate of the time needed for recovery from hooking stress was obtained. Fatigue in Lake Powell fish, as indicated by elevated blood lactate, was directly proportional to hooking time (1–5 min) and water temperature, but recovery from the hyperlacticemia was relatively rapid (about 24 h). Hyperglycemia, an indicator of stress hormone production, did not occur in largemouth bass hooked and played for 1–5 min in the coldest water (11–13°C), was moderate in fish hooked and played at l6–20°C, and was severe in fish played for 5 min at 28–30°C. Fish held for recovery in live cages suffered further hyperglycemia, presumably because of the stress of confinement. Ionoregulation, as indicated by relatively stable plasma chloride values, was not immediately affected in largemouth bass caught at water temperatures of 11–13°C or 28–30°C, but an unusual hyperchloremia developed in fish hooked and played at 16–20°C. During recovery, the expected progressive hypochloremia developed. Plasma osmolality was somewhat affected by hooking at all water temperatures tested, but recovery was almost complete within about 8 h. Mantua Reservoir fish were hooked and played only at water temperatures of 23–26°C. The hyperlacticemia and hyperglycemia that occurred were generally more severe than in the Lake Powell fish hooked and played at either 16–20°C or 28–30°C. However, effects on plasma chloride and osmolality were similar to those occurring in Lake Powell fish.

Publication Year 1991
Title Physiological response of largemouth bass to angling stress
DOI 10.1577/1548-8659(1991)120<0629:PROLBT>2.3.CO;2
Authors A. Wayne Gustaveson, Richard S. Wydoski, Gary A. Wedemeyer
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Transactions of the American Fisheries Society
Index ID 70180739
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Western Fisheries Research Center