Initial poststocking mortality, oxytetracycline mark persistence, and year-class contribution were evaluated for black-nosed crappies, a morphological variant of the black crappie Pomoxis nigromaculatus, stocked into Tennessee reservoirs during 1997-1999. Average initial poststocking mortality was low (x?? = 13%, N = 44). Lake temperature and the difference between lake and hauling tank water temperatures were significant in explaining variability in arcsine-transformed mortality estimates; however, the variability explained by these factors was low (R2 = 0.15). Oxytetracycline immersion was a highly effective marking tool; 97-100% of all crappies treated were marked, and 99% of the marks were visible 36-110 weeks after marking. All control otoliths were correctly scored as unmarked during the evaluation, and mortality rates did not differ between marked and unmarked crappies. Year-class contribution was variable across reservoirs and was highest in Normandy Reservoir (34-93% at ages 1-3). Contribution at ages 1 and 2 was 11-24% in Woods Reservoir. Stocking did not supplement the crappie population in Lake Graham. Black-nosed crappies made up a significant portion (>50%) of the crappies harvested by anglers in Center Hill Reservoir 3 years after stocking was initiated. Conversely, black-nosed crappies made up a relatively small percentage (???12%) of the crappies harvested in Cherokee Reservoir in the 4 years after initial stocking.
Additional publication details
Initial poststocking mortality, oxytetracycline marking, and year-class contribution of black-nosed crappies stocked into Tennessee reservoirs