The Largest Striped Bass Ever Caught in Texas

Striped bass
© Ray Hennessy/Shutterstock.com

Written by Rick Chillot

Updated: July 8, 2023

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A long-lived fish, the Atlantic striped bass (Morone saxatilis) can live for up to thirty years. Provided, of course, they don’t end up on the business end of a fisherman’s gear. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, the recreational harvest of striped bass typically exceeds the number caught by commercial fisheries.

How big can a 30-year-old fish get? In this case, pretty big. Striped bass are known to grow to 77 pounds and to reach five feet in length. But as you’ll soon see, some of them don’t stop there. As adults, stripers have few natural predators aside from seals and sharks. Maybe that’s because they’re too big for anyone else to mess with them.

Striped Bass Spotlight

close up of a large Striped Bass

Fisherman’s favorite, striped bass are prized sport fish.

©iStock.com/slowmotiongli

A silver-white fish with a white underside, the striped bass takes its name from the distinctive seven or eight horizontal stripes along its sides. These fish are anadromous, meaning they spend most of their lives in saltwater but return to freshwater to spawn. Some swim up to 100 miles for spawning. Given that, the striper is a coastal fish, with a natural range along the North American east coast from New Brunswick in the North and south to Florida, and west along the Gulf Coast into Louisiana. Because stripers are so prized by sport fishermen, they’ve been introduced for recreational fishing at various sites in the central U.S. and in California.

The Largest Striped Bass Ever Caught in Texas

The striped bass has been introduced to a number of fishing lakes and reservoirs in Texas. Lone Star anglers say it’s their fourth most preferred species. Not bad for an east coast fish! According to Texas Park and Wildlife state freshwater records, the largest striper caught ever caught in Texas was landed in May of 1999, on the Brazos River.  The record shows that a lucky fisherman brought in a 53-pound, 43-inch-long striper, probably after an epic battle.

Where Was the Largest Bass Ever Caught in Texas Located on a Map?

The largest bass ever caught in Texas was landed on the Brazos River – which runs down the middle of the state and serves as a border between east Texas and west Texas. The Brazos River is the 11th-longest river in the U.S. and originates at the head of Blackwater Draw, New Mexico flowing to its mouth at the Gulf of Mexico near the port city of Freeport.

Is That A Record for Striped Bass?

A large striped bass being caught by a fisherman.

Fight to the finish, striped bass can put up a long struggle before they’re caught.

©Tfreeman_Films/Shutterstock.com

In Texas, yes. But overall, nope. And look, hauling in a 53-pound fish is nothing to sneeze at! But stripers can grow even bigger in their natural range. According to the International Game Fish Association, the record goes to a catch in 2011 on Long Island Sound, which brought in an 81 lb, 4 oz, 51-inch-long fish. You read that right! The IFGA reports other catches of 78-, 76-, and 66-pounders. In some cases, the struggle to land the fish took more than an hour.


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About the Author

Rick Chillot is a freelance writer and editor who's worked in all kinds of print and digital formats, including books, magazines, newspapers, blogs, and graphic novels. He abandoned his pursuit of a biology career when nature refused to cooperate.

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