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Maryland DNR Biologists Monitor a Critical Year of Striped Bass Eggs, Larvae

Laughing gulls circled and cawed in anticipation. An osprey hauled an improbably large branch through bright green treetops. It was Earth Day, April 22, and the living things on the Choptank River marked the occasion by going on as usual. But below the water’s surface, a process was underway that repeats every year in the rivers of the Chesapeake Bay, a modest beginning to a mythic Mid-Atlantic cycle, one that powers fisheries and attracts recreational anglers up and down the coast. Another generation of striped bass had come into the world. At this stage, the striped bass are miniscule, measured in the millimeters. Only days old, they look like living eyelashes wiggling in the water, tiny lines topped with two dots of eyeballs. Without a microscope, it’s difficult to tell them apart from white perch, which float alongside them and predate their entry into the world by a week or two. Striped bass eggs are little gelatinous globes, smaller than the head of a pencil eraser. Usually mingled with the rest of the river’s murk, these larvae and eggs were brought into full sunlit view in the jars and trays of Maryland Department of Natural Resources biologists. The group was […]

The post Maryland DNR Biologists Monitor a Critical Year of Striped Bass Eggs, Larvae appeared first on Southern Maryland News Net.

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