We conducted a controlled experiment in the laboratory to assess the influence of anatomical hooking location and water temperature on survival of angler-caught and released largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides. Survival was 98% (58 of 59 fish) among fish that were hand-hooked within the oral cavity (including the gills), whereas survival was 66% (33 of 50 fish) among fish that were hand-hooked in the esophagus. Survival of hooked fish was not significantly influenced by water temperature (7-27??C) or the hooking location X water temperature interaction. We combined our results with prior research to develop a predictive model of largemouth bass survival, which was 98.3% (SD = 1.87%) for fish hooked in the oral cavity and 55.0% (SD = 9.70%) for fish hooked in the esophagus. The model is valid for water temperatures ranging from 7??C to 27??C and allows one to estimate, with known precision, the survival of angler-caught and released largemouth bass without the need for controlled studies or for holding fish in pens or cages to assess delayed mortality. ?? Copyright by the American Fisheries Society 2008.
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A simple model for predicting survival of angler-caught and released largemouth bass