Fish kill in Lake Hartwell

September 17, 2013

Why were so many striped bass found floating in Lake Hartwell  September 7? The Army Corps of Engineers and the DNRs in Georgia and South Carolina investigated the scene, 2.5 miles upstream from the Hartwell Dam. Biologist Jamie Sykes found that high outflows resulting from exceptionally high rainfall dissolved oxygen levels and affected the water temperature. Striped bass prefer cool and oxygenated water. Sykes came up with this conclusion: “Summer striped bass morality events are common in other Southeastern reservoirs, particularly lakes such as Greenwood and Murray in South Carolina and Lake Norman in North Carolina. However this is the first summer morality event that has occurred in Hartwell Lake in the 30 + years that Striped bass have been stocked. The weather conditions that led to this are very unusual. It is also important to remember that the water quality in Hartwell is generally very good and remains safe for fishing, boating, swimming, etc.”

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