Tracking the Tiger: Tiger Bass and Their Growth in the Southeast
By Barry W. Smith Certified Fisheries Scientist
Tiger Bass® is a buzzword among pond owners and bass anglers throughout the Southeast. Word of its success has traveled overseas to such unlikely places as Japan and Italy. What is this fish, where does it come from, and what is the real scoop on its growth.
The name “Tiger Bass” is actually a registered trademark of American Sport Fish Hatchery in Montgomery, Ala. This name refers to the specific cross developed at American Sport Fish, utilizing its strain of aggressive, pure northern largemouth bass bred with a strain of proven trophy Florida largemouth bass. The purpose of this particular breeding was to create a true F-1 bass that would be easy to catch and have a rapid growth rate. Private lake consultants from Georgia to Texas have distributed Tiger Bass from American Sport Fish to their clients.
The term F-1 is used in the scientific community to denote the offspring resulting from the mating of two different species, subspecies or genetic strains of animals. In this case, F-1 refers to the breeding of the two recognized subspecies of largemouth bass: Florida bass, Micropterus salmoides Floridanus, and the northern bass, Micropterus salmoides salmoides.
There are more than 2.5 million ponds scattered across the United States. Most of these ponds provide fair to excellent recreational fishing opportunities.
However, a variety of problems can affect pond fisheries as they age. Some of these problems are population imbalances due to poor management, the introduction of nuisance or unwanted species, and siltation or other loss of habitat. Most problems can be addressed and remedied by utilizing traditional management practices such as harvest strategies or corrective restocking.
Occasionally, problems become so severe that renovation of the pond is warranted. One of the benefits of managing ponds as compared to large lakes, rivers or reservoirs is that when pond fisheries decline in quality, we have the option to simply start over. Pond renovation can be complete where all the fish are eradicated by draining the pond or by eliminating the fish with the use of rotenone. Rotenone is an EPA approved fish toxicant.
A pond does not have to be invaded by a nuisance species to be considered a candidate for renovation. It is often quicker and less expensive to renovate a fishery that is severely out of balance than to rely on traditional measures such as harvest and supplemental stocking of forage. Once a largemouth bass population becomes severely stunted, there is a good chance that the stunted fish will never reach their full potential. This is often the case in old ponds that have been neglected for years. In such cases, even the best management practices will not improve such a fishery to the level that can be created over the same period of time in a newly renovated pond.
Welcome to American Sport Fish Hatchery, the Southeast’s premier source for fish stocking and pond maintenance services. We have everything you need to maintain your pond or lake, including largemouth bass, coppernose bluegill, grass carp, black crappie, threadfin shad and fathead minnows. And we’re the only place you’ll find Tiger Bass, an aggressive, easy-to-catch largemouth bass created by our scientific team. American Sport Fish also offers a full spectrum of pond management goods and services, such as pond fertilizer, aerators, automatic fish feeders, herbicides, agricultural lime application and electrofishing balance surveys. Our professional staff will help you assess your fish population and make the necessary recommendations to maximize your pond’s productivity. Click on the links above to learn more about our offerings and see why we are one of the most respected sport fish hatcheries in the country, with a client list that includes pro bass fishermen, NFL players, entertainers and two former U.S. presidents.
A Word From Our Founders...
Watch A Video of Spawning Bass
Man-eating Tiger Bass
Adjust Your Fish Feeding Program for Cooler Fall and Winter Temperatures
Thanksgiving has past and it is time to adjust your fish feeding program for cooler fall and winter temperatures. Research has shown that many fish benefit from a winter feeding program. In many areas of the Deep South, a floating catfish pellet is an effective food even during the late fall and winter. However, it is best to change the feeding time to once daily during the warmest time of the afternoon, usually between 2:00 pm and 3:00 pm.
In geographic areas of cooler winter temperatures, a sinking catfish pellet is often the most efficient choice. A sinking pellet will remain on the bottom and be accessible to the bluegill for a long time, whereas a floating pellet may be washed upon the bank if the fish do not eat the food immediately. As the temperature cools, the bluegill’s metabolism slows and it does not eat as much or as often as it might during warmer weather.
Prepare for winter, change the feeding events on your automatic fish feeder to once daily and feed a sinking catfish pellet.
Stock Your Pond!
By stocking the right kind of fish and following a well-developed plan of maintenance and fertilization, you can grow trophy-sized fish in your pond. Let American Sport Fish Hatchery help you reach your pond's maximum potential!
Have A Perfect Pond
Perfect Pond Plus is truly a revolutionary tool for maintaining the perfect balance in your pond. It is easy to apply, water soluble, and will not clump.