As you probably know by now, if you have been following my posts, that I love to fish for large mouth bass mainly. I do however love to catch white bass in the spring and when the bass aren't cooperating, I pursue the striper bass and/ or hybrid white bass. I am going to focus today on stripers and hybrids or as some refer to the hybrids as "WIPERS"
In the natural, striper bass spend most of their lives in salt water, and venture inland up freshwater streams to spawn. Once the different state conservation agencies figure out that the striper could survive in freshwater they began to stock them in several lakes all over the United States. It didn' t take them long to figure out that the stripers didn' t spawn in captivity or impounded lakes. I assume the saltwater is an important factor in spawning.
INTRODUCING THE HYBRID (WIPER)!
A hybrid striper are hatchery produced by crossing a female striper bass with a male white bass. Natural spawning of these hybrids has not been officially observed and whether they do or don't is a controversial subject. You will hear a pretty good arguement from both sides. Continual restocking is an ever present event on most lakes and here in Missouri the stripers and the hybrids seem to me to be abundant in several of our lakes.
Stripers and Wipers diet mainly consists of shad and they seem to prefer shad that are 5 inches or longer. However,these 2 species can also be caught on many types of artificial lure. I read recently that for every striper or wiper that is caught on a lure , 10 are caught on shad. So, I think it is safe to assume that shad is the best bait to use.
Stripers tend to get up to 30+ lbs in Missouri lakes, and I am sure they get bigger but I believe the world record striper is 78.5 lbs caught in Atlantic City, New Jersey, In 1982.
The world record Hybrid or wiper is close to 28 lbs, and I am not sure as where or when it was caught.
Stripers and wipers like there relatives the white bass are primarily school fish, so if you catch one , there is probably more close by. They both are very aggressive predators and have a tendency to strip off a lot of line in a hurry. You need to have a lot of line and a relatively loose drag or otherwise they will break off. If you don't use a good hook they tend to literally straighten the hook out !
If you have never been striper fishing, then you need to try it. The thrill of a big striper or hybrid stripping of line and a hard pulling fight, will be something you won't soon forget. A really big striper will literally tire you out and you will definitely need to sit down and rest your arms after the fight to get the blood flowing in your arms again. I am not kidding. It is an awesome experience. Once you hook one , you will be hooked for life. Pun intended ; - ) !
If you want to try your luck with artificial lures , try big flashy lures, and cast or troll them. Stripers and wipers primarily spend their time in the deeper waters of the main lake body. In the spring you can find them up the rivers and creeks that feed into the lake. Like white bass they think they will spawn, but like I stated before this has never really been offiicially observed.
I hope this has been an informal post on stripers and wipers, and like I said before if you haven't tried this exciting method of fishing before, then get out there and try it. You will like it! There is so much more material on these two fish, just google them and you will be amazed at the photos you will see.
So until next time, keep your hooks wet , and enjoy the
"Great Outdoors"! See you all out there!