Last Report of the 2011 Striped Bass Season on the Roanoke River

Here’s to another great striped bass season on the Roanoke River. 

On Monday, biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission completed what may be their last spawning stock assessment of the season. They collected about 400 striped bass while electrofishing at Weldon.  

The water temperature is reaching the upper end of preferred striped bass spawning range, which is 76 degrees Fahrenheit. Commission biologists Jeremy McCargo,  Ben Ricks and Kevin Dockendorf observed spawning activity, “rock fights,” on Monday and spawning has been occurring over the last few weeks.
According to McCargo, fishing success has been fairly scattered. Some anglers can still do well, while it may be slow for others, he said. Fishing effort is winding down and although there will be a few fish around for another week or so, it is likely the spawn will come to an end by the weekend and the remaining stripers will make their way back down the Roanoke to the Albemarle Sound and the Atlantic Ocean.

River flows have dropped to around 5,000 cfs, which will hasten the stripers return to the Ocean as water temperatures climb. Some anglers have reported drifting downstream a considerable distance below Weldon before finding fish.

Many thanks go out to the following people for their hard work during the 2011 striped bass sampling and creel survey on the Roanoke River, including Chad Thomas, Ben Ricks and Kevin Dockendorf, who provided valuable field assistance, as well as provided updates for the fishing report throughout the season. Pete Kornegay and Frank McBride provided timely information from the creel survey that greatly assisted the report.

And a very special THANK YOU to Commission biologist Jeremy McCargo, Bobby Colston, owner of Colston’s Tackle Box on Hwy. 48 south of Gaston and Ricky Mobley from the Roanoke Sportsman at 749 River Road in Williamston. Without their weekly input, these reports could not have been written. These are the folks who work, fish and live in the area and who graciously agreed to take time out of their busy schedules to provide Roanoke-bound anglers with timely accounts of the fishing activity along the river.

See you next spring.

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