Striped bass eggs hatch 29 to 80 hours after fertilization. Newly hatched larvae remain suspended in the water column and tend to suffocate if they spend and extended period of time in oxygen poor water. Larvae measure about 3.1 mm long. As larvae, nourishment comes from the large yolk mass the females released with her eggs, and after two to four days their mouth forms. Once larvae begin feeding, primary prey consists of microscopic organisms that occupy the same area of water column. Juveniles are highly sensitive to their environment and can be greatly affected by changes in temperature or salinity. About 1 week after hatching, juveniles begin feeding on small crustaceans, such as copepods. Once they reach about 2 inches in length, juveniles begin feeding primarily on mysid shrimp and amphipods. During their first year of life, striped bass reach anywhere from 10 to 12 inches in length. Males reach sexual maturity by 3 years of age, and females reach sexual maturity within 4 to 6 years of age. Striped bass can live for up to 20 years in the wild.
Development - Life Cycle: indeterminate growth
- Sanders, B. 2010. "Striped Bass Spawning Habits" (On-line). Accessed March 02, 2011 at http://www.arkansasstripers.com/striper_spawning.htm.